running a business

Which Qualities Make a Good Leader?

As kids, almost all of us want to be the group leader in every team activity or the team captain during recess. This is one thing that we take forward into our adulthood and professional life as well. Instead of working under someone, anyone would want to be the leader of the group; who people would follow, instead of being a follower.

That’s exactly what we’re going to discuss here; being a good leader. Being a good leader is important for running a business. But first, it is important to understand the difference between being a leader and a boss. A boss is someone who pushes the team from behind, and can be pictured as someone using force and fear to make a team work. Whereas, a leader is someone who takes the charge and leads the team forward along with him. He is his team’s motivator and supporter. A leader and a boss, will both get the work done but there will be an obvious difference in the environment of both companies.

A good leader is someone who transfers energy to the team. But, for this, it’s important to have the right intentions and build trust with your team. This requires consistency, which is highly crucial when running a business.

A leader is someone who takes the charge and leads the team forward along with him. He is his team’s motivator and supporter.

If you want to be a good leader, then your actions and attitude need to be consistent throughout. This is important for you, your employees, and your company’s progress overall. No one will believe you or your vision from day one. It takes time to build trust but once you do, the transfer of energy will be a smooth process like the flow of current, from you to your team.

Let’s take a look at some background factors to be able to understand leadership better. First things first, you need to understand what kind of a team do you want? This is something that you need to decide before hiring people for your team.

Determine the kind of energy you need for running a business. The trick here is to hire employees who you think will be able to understand and match your energy better. This is less time-consuming. Why? Because if you have already hired your team and then you see the difference between you and your team member’s energy level and try to make them match it then, it will take more time and might not work for everyone. Not everyone will be comfortable with it either.

To be a good leader who is capable of transferring their energy to others, you need to have certain qualities. Some of these qualities that we’ll be discussing are:

  • Transparency
  • Creating leaders
  • Ownership
  • Empathy

Running a Business with Transparency

Being transparent is important for a leader. One thing that you should never do is lie to your employees. Even if it is to protect them or keep them motivated. You may lie to your employees to prevent demotivation or because you fear it will spread negativity. This might even be good for the short term but it will lead to problems later on.

Imagine if the employees find out that they were lied to, how do you think they’ll react? How would it be for their morale? You and your team developed a bond of trust, which can break in the blink of an eye, just because of one small lie, which you thought would be fruitful. This is not something that is recommended when running a business. Having a trusting bond with your team is the key to running a successful business.

It is essential to keep your team aware of everything and anything, no matter how bitter it might be. In this way, the team would be standing with you through everything because they would know that you trusted them. In return they feel valued.

One thing that you should never do is lie to your employees. Even if it is to protect them or keep them motivated.

A Leader Develops Leaders Below Him

A good leader should always share leadership knowledge with those they work with. You should work to develop leaders below you. A leader should not have insecurities when it comes to sharing their knowledge and skills with their team and other employees. You should always have a positive attitude towards making others better and more capable. This will also help you in management.

Sharing everything you know and have learned with your employees will not make you any less important. Everyone has their own set of achievements which they want to reach. As a leader, their success should not make you insecure.

Your aim should be to hire people who are better than you. That is to say, people who are better skilled than you. Why? So that they can contribute towards things that you have lesser knowledge of and you can help them learn wherever they are lacking.

Taking Ownership of Everything

Everyone makes mistakes. Even I do. After all, we’re all just human beings at the end of the day. Being 100% accurate in the decisions or assumptions that you make is impossible. You might be right 80% of the time, but there will always be a 20% probability of the opposite. But, you can always improve this probability. The accuracy of making the right decisions can be improved from 60% to 70% to 80% and more but there will always be some kind of existing imperfection. The key here is to take responsibility for these imperfections and mistakes, and work towards preventing them in the future.

Being 100% accurate in the decisions or assumptions that you make is impossible. You might be right 80% of the time, but there will always be a 20% probability of the opposite.

It’s important to take ownership of things, even if they go wrong if you want to be a good leader. It’s your responsibility to do so. Hiring is a crucial process when running a business. So be careful to hire individuals who are ready to take ownership of their actions just like you. Sometimes you might think you hired the right person but later they can fail to fit in. You shouldn’t be held entirely accountable for it, because these are things that you can only judge and assume to a certain extent. The rest you find out only when the situation actually arises.

Feeling and Understanding the Employees

Not everyone can be a leader. Let alone a good one. To be a good leader you should be able to empathize with your employees, if not sympathize. Your aim should be to put them first; before the company.

It’s very easy to say that you’re a leader but it’s not that easy to live up to that title and perform accordingly. You can’t justify your leadership. It’s the employees who work under you and the people you have worked with, who can justify whether you’re a good leader or not.

To be a good leader you should be able to empathize with your employees, if not sympathize. Your aim should be to put them first; before the company.

To be a good leader you need to have a good understanding of other individuals and of running a business. You have to be a good follower before you can be a good leader. The four qualities we discussed are only a few of the many that a good leader should possess. Good leadership doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to build that trust and belief with your team and employees. Just stay consistent, patient, and adopt the qualities we talked about to be a good leader. Now just go get it!

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