Over the past 15+ years, I've been fortunate enough to manage large teams for some of the best brands in the world. I’ve also served as the global president of the biggest professional social media organization in the world, Social Media Club. While some leadership qualities can be taught, many you are born with. I never waited for somebody to ask me to take charge, I just saw the need and owned it. Like many other leaders, I tend to lead whenever the opportunity arrises. You have to be comfortable leading, know your strengths and be able to connect with people, but if you don’t, you can learn how to with these tips.
Be organized and make lists. I’m always up until the wee hours of the morning making lists on my iPhone of things that need to get done for the week. If you’re a morning person, make your lists then -- what matters is that the lists get made so you can feel good when crossing off the completed tasks. Time management is key to your success and leaders know how to use it effectively to get the job done!
Great leaders listen and are open to the opinions of others. Being a leader doesn’t mean forcing others to always agree with you, but to listen to other’s opinions and then evaluate what the best practices are moving forward. People tend to follow leaders who they believe in and who they feel are accurately representing them. A good leader shapes communities by listening to his/her intuition.
It’s also important to give back. I do so through my Social Media Club nonprofit, but find the organization that connects to you. As social media marketing is my passion, I love helping others in this area. Being president of a global non-profit is not without its challenges though. You have to draw upon all of your leadership training, but at the same time, be empathetic and realistic. Turnover rate will be high. That is a given, but the bonds you will form, connections you will make and things you will accomplish will be priceless.
Good leaders excel at delegating the workload. Take Steve Jobs for example. The Apple co-founder was a notorious micromanager. Jobs was the one in charge of soliciting goals from staff each year, and before big meetings, always assigned someone to be in charge of each item on the agenda. It doesn’t matter what style of management you feel most comfortable with, the crucial part to leading is knowing who on your team can get the job done. Being able to see who isn’t, and knowing when to replace them, is also an important leadership trait.
Be open to change! In today’s fast-paced, competitive, and mobile world, leaders have more opportunities and greater necessity than ever to engage their workforce. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Good leaders learn more from past mistakes and have the courage to make new ones. Leaders aren’t afraid to be original and they always ask questions. They never stop learning! Leaders are worthy of that trust and organically lead by example.
While not all good leaders are as devoted to fitness as I am, it only helps to exercise regularly. It’s a proven fact that the endorphins from exercise increase productivity. Those endorphins also increase confidence, which is a huge part of being a successful, natural leader. It can be as easy as a walk at your lunch break to recharge, or a quick gym break if that’s accessible.
Last but not least, good leaders don’t show off in order to brag or intimidate their staff. Top leaders today care less about credentials and more about great ideas, wherever those ideas come from. These leaders check their egos at the door and aren’t afraid to say that they don’t have all the answers. They admit when they don’t know and look to others to holistically make the changes required to take their business to the next level!
I hope this helps with your own personal leadership endeavours. I recommend that you take what advice I am giving here and implement it into your own personal leadership style. Test it out and see what works for you. Feel free to reach out to me anytime on Twitter for advice and good luck!