56 - Be a good leader . . . and watch your career grow!

Reason for this Goal on how to be a good leader:   A good leader is sought after in all businesses and organizations, whether you are running your own business or are an employee in someone else’s business.  Even an employee in a junior position can exhibit leadership, and there is room within any organization for leaders to excel.  Not only are leaders respected and admired, leaders have the strongest careers and more personal satisfaction in their work life. 

A good piece of advice I learned is to consider yourself as the president of your own business, even while working for a company or a boss.  

10 strategies on how to be a good leader . . . 

Here are some examples of how you can exhibit leadership within your career and how to be a good leader: 

  1. Speak up in meetings or to your boss about things that matter - Put your self in your bosses position and bring things to his/her attention and offer your opinions and suggestions, keeping things positive.  Most bosses dislike negative talk, but they love people who aren't afraid to speak up, concisely.
  2. Make suggestions on how to improve the business. - Every good business owner, manager or leader are looking for suggestions on how to improve the business. Be someone who makes suggestions.
  3. Advocate for spending wisely - Treat the spending of money as if it was your own money and that it matters to the success of the business.
  4. Develop your communication skills, - Look for opportunities to use them (writing, speaking, etc.).  See Goal 8 on specific ideas on how you can improve.  The best communicators in any business will get promoted.
  5. Don’t accept status quo; embrace change - One of the worst expressions in any business is "we've always done it like that".  Companies that don't embrace change won't be around for long.  Embrace change.
  6. Encourage and support goal setting within your organization - Most leaders recognize and embrace the need to set goals to improve the business and meet objectives. If you embrace goal setting, you will get noticed and feel more connected to your organizational results.
  7. Don’t speak badly about any individual.  - Be constructive.  It is tempting to talk negatively about others that you don't believe are carrying their weight. Don't do it.  While it's human nature for some, for professionals, it is not acceptable.
  8. Treat others the way you’d like to be treated - This is the golden rule that applies in just about all situations. Put yourself in someone else's shoes before determining your best course of action.
  9. Engage in crucial conversations - Especially if you manage others, it is important that you get comfortable with addressing people and situations that need to be dealt with. The longer you leave something, the more difficult it becomes. 
  10. Be optimistic about the way things will be - In most (but not all) cases, the people that rise to the top of any organization are the ones that are the most optimistic in their thinking.  

KEY POINT About becoming a Leader:

The McKinsey Foundation for Management Research conducted a large-scale study to determine what it takes to become an executive. Leaders in business, government, science and religion were questioned.  Over and over again in different ways these researchers kept getting one answer: the most important qualification for a leader is the "sheer desire to get ahead" . . .

From the book "Magic of Thinking Big" by David Schwartz

Suggested Goal(s):    Take a leadership program, read books and practice how to become a good leader.
Your Outrageous Goal:   Have others praise your leadership ability.

It is difficult to assess whether you are a good leader or not.  The desire to be a good leader is the foundation.  A good way to know whether you are a good leader is through a 360-degree feedback survey completed by peers and leadership if you are employed in a company.  

Return to career goals.

How to be an effective leader

To be a More Effective Leader, Put these Four Leadership Principles to Work

  1. Trade minds with the people you want to influence. It's easy to get others to do what you want them to do if you'll see things through their eyes. Ask yourself this question before you act: "What would I think of this, if I exchanged places with the other person?"
  2. Apply the "Be-Human" rule in your dealings with others. Ask, "What is the human way to handle this?" In everything you do, show that you put other people first. Just give other people the kind of treatment you like to receive. 
  3. Think progress, believe in progress, push for progress. Think improvement in everything you do. Think high standards in everything you do. Over a period of time subordinates tend to become carbon copies of their chief.  Be sure the master copy is worth duplicating. Make this a personal resolution: "At home, at work, in community life, if it's progress I'm for it."
  4. Take time out to confer with yourself and tap your supreme thinking power. Managed solitude pays off. Use it to release your creative power. Use it to find solutions to personal and business problems. So spend some time alone every day just for thinking. Use the thinking technique all great leaders use. Confer with yourself.

From page 229-230 of the book, the Magic of Thinking Big by David Schwartz.

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Last updated: January 30, 2020