Do you want to get better? Do you want to lead people effectively? Do you want people to believe in you? Do you want to align people around common goals? Well, if the answer is yes, here are 5 things you must do.
1. Operate outside of your comfort zone. – This is often called working towards stretch goals. The premise is simple. Much like a muscle, you cannot grow unless you are flexed past your limit. Testing yourself and accepting challenges that are beyond your current capacity does this for you. As a leader, it allows you to network and teaches you that asking for help is a strength.
2. Educate yourself. This is another cornerstone of good leadership. Education about yourself, your craft and your team, allows you to have an educated perspective. Education is not bad, even if you don’t agree with the material being presented. As a leader, you must be a student of leadership. That means challenging the status quo.
3. Make Mistakes. This may seem counterintuitive, but if you think about it, you won’t make many mistakes doing things you are used to doing. By pushing beyond the limits you will surely make mistakes. The best part about mistakes is that you learn what not to do. You also learn that you will live after your mistakes. No one has ever “made it” without hitting a few bumps in the road.
4. Surround yourself with people smarter than you. When you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room. As you gain momentum in your career and move up the ladder, utilizing the knowledge and expertise of others will be a key factor in your ability to influence positive results.
5. Don’t take yourself so seriously. – There are times to laugh and times to cry, but in the end, everything always works out. It all depends on your perspective. Basically, there is nothing more important than your faith, your family and yourself. If you don’t take care of these things, all else is for naught. We’re only human, no need to add stress to your life by worrying. Learn to have fun.
By doing the things above, you will gain competence as a leader. Through competence, you will gain confidence. When you reach beyond your capacity and attain goals you thought were impossible, you break barriers. This educates you through experience, which is probably the worlds best teacher. Sure you’ll make mistakes, but with people around you to help guide you, you will learn to laugh at life’s little blunders. Your leadership skills will grow and others will respect and follow you, not because of your title, but because of who you are.