Imagine your life as two levels:
- Level One – Slave.
- Level Two – Leading.
Leadership may seem somewhat inaccessible as if a person should be born with the wings of an angel. Or it may seem something difficult and not worthy of attention. That’s exactly what I once thought. He was not going to become a leader – it seemed pointless.
And once, when I experienced an insight, its effect can be compared with the effect that removes taffeta from Picasso’s painting at the first moment of its demonstration, I saw the truth: leadership is achievable. You do not need to have any experience or be born with god-like charm.
I have always been a follower in my career. Then I became interested in the second level. Was it really that hard? Can a beginner play this game and find the secret of victory?
At the Picasso Moment, those I admired told me how they had become leaders.
The answer was not what I expected. They became the best, having realized the basic principle, which sounds like this: leadership is first of all the ability to think about others, and only then about oneself.
This principle was somewhat revolutionary for a child born in a kangaroo country – in Australia, pal. If this was the basis, then how many people like me could not try the second level, because they simply did not know the main principle?
My leadership path started from here. Now I make a living by leading people and also playing the same role on the Internet as a blogger.
So, if you have not been a leader before, here is what you need to know …
Whoever came up with the meaning of the word “leader” was mistaken. He had to write the concept in two words: a model of behaviour. And your task as a leader is to follow the right model of behaviour. This is manifested in the manner of conversation, in the decisions made and, above all, in relation to other people – especially to those with whom you are not very familiar or even to strangers. Yes, your attitude towards strangers is demonstrated by what you uphold.
A vivid example. One day, John Fitzgerald Kennedy asked a cleaner at NASA what he was doing, he replied: “I help send a man to the moon.” Since then, Kennedy began to respect the cleaner and even asked for his opinion, while other high-ranking participants decided to ignore the cleaner.
Do not be angry.
The myth of leaders is that they never get annoyed and seem calm most of the time. But this is not so. Leaders know that it’s better not to get angry and not to say something to regret if the information becomes publicly available. This does not mean that leaders are not annoyed either; they simply understand how to control anger and do not allow it to take control of itself.
The leader’s job is to get people to act.
This is how they explained this to me when I tried to become a school captain in elementary school and asked the former school captain for advice: “Appreciate your time. “Many everyday tasks are not as charming as sending a person to the moon, but they still need to be done.”
The task may seem simple, but in the end, solve the current human needs. For example, try to connect customer calling to someone’s career plan to become a golf champion or use the spreadsheet task as a step in the process of overcoming stress.
You inspire people by linking what they do with what matters to them.
You tell your own stories that will be useful to people. Focus on how this helped you, not how cruel and confused the world is.
Inspiration is just the glasses you wear. These glasses see good in everything, and not vice versa.
Look people in the eye
Looking into someone’s eyes is not so simple – it makes a person vulnerable. It is in the eyes that all the stories are told in which you talk about yourself as a leader.
Look into someone’s eyes and tell him: “We will do this,” or “I won’t let you down.” Here is what trust is built on.
Through your eyes, you can tell people the most complex things about yourself without evading the truth.
In order for people to follow you, you need to prove why you are the right person to lead. Stories are the best way to share wisdom with the people you work with.
People will not follow you if they cannot communicate with you and stories do not create the necessary relationship. Find out what is bothering your people, and then provide a solution by telling a story about how it was done earlier.
Sincerely take care of people
Show your team the following care:
- Have lunch with them.
- Play ping pong with them.
- Send them a message if they get sick.
- Let them go to the funeral.
- Congratulate them when they have a baby.
These simple actions can show people that you care about them. And when you care about others, they care about you and respect your position.
Be confident in your point of view
The whole process of the following someone begins with the adoption of the point of view of the leader.
If you like a leader, but he advocates the opposite point of view, you will not follow him. You cannot reckon with every opinion. What kind of person do you want to be remembered for?
Become a playing coach
True leadership is to get rid of the ubiquitous hierarchical prison.
People follow you when you show them that you are just like them. That is why I never ask anyone to do what I am not ready to do myself. I love spending the day surrounded by my team. It shows me their problems and allows me to be compassionate when something goes wrong.
If all you do is preach and never go out of your way or the years have passed when you did what you teach, people will not follow you. Show people that you don’t believe in the hierarchy by doing the same things they do. As a leader, you are no better than your team. What they do, so do you.
Do not be afraid to ask for help
If you are a leader, this does not mean that you have all the answers. You can ask for help, and this does not lower your position. Leaders understand that they cannot do their job without the support of people with skills that they lack. Leadership is a team sport. Feel free to ask for help.
Thoughtfully delegate tasks
Some leaders make the mistake of trying to do everything and be everywhere. This leads to overload and burnout. Delegation is part of the job description. A small life hack I learned: to carefully delegate, choose tasks that support the personal interests of the team.
If someone has a goal to learn how to negotiate, delegate your next negotiation or let them join you. Be careful when assigning tasks depending on what your people care about. Such thoughtfulness creates an unshakable level of loyalty.
Take it easy that not everything works out well.
Turns me on tables. So I scream about it on every corner. No one can be really good at everything, regardless of his education. You have a list of strengths and weaknesses. Like me, and freelancing network team. Do not forget this.
Praise but remember to have difficult conversations
Otherwise, you will become a marshmallow, which is too soft, tasty in small doses, but not suitable for general nutrition.
Praise is as important as tough conversations when someone does not give all the best. People appreciate when you tell them the truth because it is then that they can draw everything for their future growth.
Learning is best done under pressure or in uncomfortable circumstances if required. Praise alone will ultimately lead to difficult conversations when the results do not live up to expectations.
Do not complicate
A few key goals are all you need.
Leaders who say they are going to do all this almost always end up doing little. People lose faith in those who promise the world and do not bring anything material.
The leader comes from focusing. The focus is built on experience – take no more than three simple goals that your team wants to achieve.
Know there are people who don’t like you
Nobody will tell you this from the very beginning. As a leader, you will see that in the team you will have people who love you, but some will not love you or even begin to hate you. There will also be those who think that everything you do is sucks.
Your job as a leader is not to make everyone love you. Your job is for people to respect you, regardless of whether they agree or disagree with your opinion.
Moreover, the team will also include some people who do not even fit into these categories and simply hate you, because their own life is “sucks” and their hatred fills in them some void that you could never have predicted and should not try to understand.
This is leadership in a nutshell for those who have not done this before. Give the second level a chance. This is a completely different game.