Owning a business or becoming a manager does not guarantee that you will develop good leadership skills. No one, including me, was automatically a good leader. Like honing any skill set, it takes study and practice…and more study and practice.
In my experience as a business owner and consultant, I have found the following three guidelines invaluable in helping others and myself make effective decisions that lead to effective results.
As you apply these guidelines, you lay the foundation for making decisions that have value. Combined with frequent use, common sense, and experience, these guidelines will help you evaluate the decisions you need to make, before you make them. Thoughtful and informed consideration of your decision will always lead to the improvement of its value.
Are things going the way you expect? If not, ask what else you can do to ensure effective control and coordination that leads to the desire outcome. This way, you will know if or when you have to modify your plan.
Leaders may have different definitions of control, depending upon the circumstances. However, it is best to be less concerned with consensus and more concerned that employees properly understand what you communicate.
Does everyone know what to do and how to do it? Ask what needs to occur so that everyone involved has the required knowledge and skills to ensure effective progress. Leaders will need to determine whether they have the right people on the team. In addition, it is important to find out whether employees need coaching, such as on-the-job or one-on-one training.
Are the conditions right? Ask what you must do to ensure all persons, who have to execute decisions, will have a positive and proactive approach. Leaders must ensure that policies and procedures are in place. This reduces stress over having to interpret how to implement decisions. And of course, you should provide tangible rewards for a job well done.
A ‘thank you’ for a job well done can go a long way in boosting effective results. Give some thought to this very simple gesture. It may surprise you how many things your employees do that deserve recognition.
The Final Perspective
Here is my final perspective on becoming a good leader. On a recent flight, the plane broke out of the clouds over Atlanta on the way home to Fort Worth. The Delta 757 seemed to be yawing right. Then I heard our captain on my headphones (which I had tuned to the air traffic channel) say, “We’re going around…” With that, the captain stepped on the gas, and we soared upwards again. “State your reason,” said the controller. “Not enough ceiling,” said the captain. Twenty minutes later, I was safely on the ground.
No one is paying you as a leader to take life-threatening risks. Your company pays you, just like the captain, to use judgment. At some point, we all are responsible for other people’s lives (careers, self-esteem, decisions, and so on). So, don’t try to land if you can’t see where you’re going.
Following these three simple steps can help you see where you are going as a leader and how to get there. Improve your leadership skills and you will bring value to the decisions that you and others execute.
To get more information and receive other no-cost special audio downloads, reports, articles, blog posts, and more, visit Ron Hequet where I cover valuable topics that every person wanting to grow their business or career needs to know. And, if you’re ready to take your business to the next level, get a free assessment from me personally at Free Business Assessment or for those wanting to build your career go to Complimentary Coaching Assessment.