04 Oct 5 ways to become a better leader
If you have employees or hope to have employees one day, leadership skills are essential to the success of your business. The question is, how do you become a better leader?
Leadership can seem stressful or challenging, especially if you have never led anyone before. If you do have a team that you manage, you may be a great leader, but there is always room for improvement.
At Rochon & Associates, we aim to provide pro-active advice on more than just bookkeeping. So here are five ways that you can start improving your leadership skills today.
1) Listen to your employees
You may believe you are a good listener, but this skill is sadly underdeveloped. Do you find yourself rushing the conversation, thinking about what you are going to say before the person you are talking to is done speaking, interrupting them, or talking over them? These are all clues that you need to improve your listening skills. It can be hard as a busy business owner to develop this skill, but slowing down, and listening can be a considerable advantage as a leader. It shows compassion, empathy, respect, and employees will feel valued, in turn, working harder for you.
2) Actions speak louder than words
Just like a parent who is parenting their children, if you want your employees to mirror certain behaviours you have to do them yourself. Are you always late and then criticizing employees for their lateness? Are you the first to say employees need to be more organized, but you are frazzled continuously? This is not to say you can never be late or unorganized. However, good leaders know that actions speak louder than words. Communication is more than words. Do as I say, not as I do, isn’t a great way to lead.
3) Be the most passionate and positive person in the room
Are you a naturally passionate person? Do you love your business? If so, those are great qualities to have. If you like what you do, that passion is infectious. Everyone around you will pick up on it, including your employees. Truly loving what you do and bringing that passion and inspiration out is a wonderful way to encourage and motivate others. If you have ever worked in a negative environment before you know how powerful a passionate, positive one can be.
4) Know who you are – confidence is key
What do you value? What are your priorities? What are your goals? If you don’t know the answers to these questions, it can make it difficult to lead others. Confidence is vital in leadership. Employees will have a hard time getting behind someone who doesn’t know what they want. Or someone who doesn’t seem to understand what they are doing. Spend some time figuring out what’s important to you, what you want out of life and leading others will become easier.
5) Give recognition when deserved
Good leaders aren’t in it for themselves. They are in it for the team, the group. They know if you win, we all win. They recognize employees for their achievements and give praise when deserved. A word of caution, recognition can be a double-edged sword; you don’t want to give it out too often, or it becomes less valued but when credit is due, say so. Words can be a powerful motivator, and when given in the right context, exceptional leaders know this is a great way to motivate their team and ultimately lead to the success of their business.
Lastly, one thing that all good leaders do well is a delegate. If bookkeeping isn’t something, you or your employees have time to do be sure to get in touch with us today!