Leadership skills can be practiced at any level at work, regardless of the title you hold. These are skills most employers seek in the employees they promote through the organization. Successful leaders will show their value and ethics in all of their actions, including their demonstration of initiative, innovativeness and proactive action. The truth is, you can be a leader at your workplace, or among your peers, without having anyone directly reporting to you at all. Leadership is more about how others seek your advice, learn for you from you or are inspired by you. Here are some ways you can demonstrate your leadership skills in the workplace so your employer takes notice.
Communication — Leaders must be able to clearly and succinctly communicate with others. However, communication is not just about talking, it’s also about listening. Strong leaders establish a steady flow of communication between themselves and others, using an open-door policy or regular conversations. Even if you’re not in a leadership position, establishing good lines of communication with other departments helps demonstrate your ability to share ideas across departmental lines. Learn how to become an active listener, explain your ideas, and communicate with precision and clarity. It is also important to learn how to ask questions, as asking the right questions demonstrates dedication and enthusiasm for your work.
Performance — If you want others to recognize your skills and abilities, it’s important to deliver, and then over deliver. Doing what’s more than expected helps you to stand out from the crowd. At the same time, it is important to establish boundaries and know your limits. Your confidence and determination to outperform other employees should not overshadow your health and wellness. In other words, if you have to work 15 hours a day to outperform what your bosses expect of you, it might be time to rethink how you’re getting things done. It’s important to work smarter, not necessarily harder.
Responsibility — When projects go well, a good leader will share the praise with the team who helped them achieve the goals. When there are failures, good leaders take ownership, no matter how the mistakes were made. Pointing fingers demonstrates to management you may not be ready to take on additional responsibilities. If you’re the leader of the team, no matter how the mistakes were made, the buck stops with you. Taking responsibility also means acting positively and proactively. So if something does go wrong, be solution-oriented and encourage your team to find the answer in order to make things right.
Think like a leader — It’s important you think strategically about how to advance the goals of your company and what affects the rest of the team. As you create plans or develop ideas to help move the company forward, it places you front and center in your manager sights. Initiate discussions on how you, or your team, can contribute to the organization’s value and success, and to the company’s customers. If you have identified a problem or an issue, try to understand the root cause and define a solution instead of immediately reacting.
While these skills will demonstrate your ability to be a strong leader in your organization, not everyone is born a leader. In many cases, you may have to learn the skills you need to demonstrate your abilities. You may choose to emulate the qualities of an authority figure you admire, find someone who will mentor you through the process, read books and articles on the subject, attend conferences or do all four.
At Stellar Staffing Solutions, we are committed to assisting you to achieve your goals and improve your leadership skills. Contact us today and we’ll work with you to find a position where your talent will be appreciated.