05 Nov Leading by example
Say the word leader out loud, notice the first syllable is ‘lead’? While it sounds like an obvious trait to possess, not all leaders have a natural ability to lead by example, but it’s imperative if you want to inspire your team and earn their respect.
Good leaders do exactly that, they lead by example. By walking your talk, you become someone people want to follow. When leaders say one thing, but do another, they erode trust – which we all know is critical to effective leadership. Here are some ways you can set an awesome example for your team – let’s face it, you can’t expect people to do something you are not prepared to do yourself, so if you want your team to take ownership of their actions, you need to do the same.
Create a clear vision; know what you want to achieve, and why. Communicate this to your team frequently. Your actions have the potential to affect everyone around you – so don’t dabble in mediocrity.
Take responsibility. Know when to accept that a mistake has been made and take it upon yourself to fix it. It doesn’t matter if one of your team members messed up or you did. If you are the leader, you need to take responsibility. This encourages everyone around you to accept responsibility and be accountable.
Give credit to your team. The more your team feels appreciated, the more enthusiastic they will become. Communicate your mission, vision, values, and goals – then step back and let your team innovate. Listen and seek regular feedback from your team. If someone needs extra guidance, keep it for private one-on-one discussions.
Look after yourself. Exercise regularly, eat well and take breaks. A balanced team, mentally and physically, is a successful team. The more you take care of yourself, the more energy you will have and the clearer your mind will be.
Roll up your sleeves. Show that when a job needs to be done, everyone at every level needs to chip in and participate.
Leading by example does two very important things; it inspires people and it earns you respect. If you can observe your own behaviours and understand the impacts they are likely to have on others, you can use this information to make gradual changes that have a lasting positive impact. Personal growth can be challenging, but don’t feel that you need to do this on your own. I’d love to hear about your goals, challenges and successes.