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Creating Strong Leadership Skills

When it comes to leadership, there are no set requirements that need to be met to become a leader. However, there are certain skills one should have to be a strong leader, as opposed to an ineffective one. These skills aren’t hard skills that can be methodically taught or measured but are soft skills that are important in the workplace. Having strong leadership skills can include qualities such as good communication, having a clear vision, and being able to listen to team members amongst other things. These are only a few examples and may not sound significant, but they make a vast difference when practised.

For example, it is common knowledge that communication is important in a relationship whether between family, friends, or partners, but it is also important between team members. A leader should be able to have clear communication channels with their team to get the job done successfully and to solve problems as soon as possible. Having a clear vision is also important, because if the leader has no clear goal, then the team will not know what to work towards. Although a leader should be knowledgeable in their area, this doesn’t guarantee strong leadership skills if they can’t be flexible towards what their team members communicate with them. So, a good leader should be able to listen to others and apply corrections or suggestions where it best fits to achieve the set goal, whether it be the company’s or the leader’s objective. An example would be if a leader works in a company that manufactures cranes where the company’s main purpose is to produce these cranes. The leader may have a more specified goal such as to make the largest crane in the country. To achieve this goal, the manager should be able to clearly communicate this goal to their team members, otherwise, they’ll only continue to keep working towards manufacturing cranes without a clear end goal. Great leadership doesn’t purely end in good communication either, because if a problem arises during the planning process and the leader doesn’t listen to their team, it will delay the process and even fail if a valid solution isn’t found.

For some people, these skills come naturally but for others, a little help may be needed to bring out these traits. Although these skills are not traditionally taught in school or university, they can still be acquired through hands-on practice and work experience. One can have great knowledge in a field and even specialise in it, but if they aren’t able to influence their team to follow, then leadership coaching could be the answer. In leadership coaching, the coach’s goal is to help the leader develop or achieve a skill they may feel they lack. For more experienced managers, these coaching programs could assist in enhancing an existing skill. Leadership coaching isn’t limited to those who are new to a leadership role. Anyone could choose to undergo coaching, whether one has just started a leadership role within a small team or has been leading a team of more than a hundred people for a long period of time. Those who are in high-ranking leadership roles, such as executives or CEO’s, can also require such coaching, and they can choose to participate in executive coaching. Through executive coaching, the coach works more on unlocking the leader’s potential and strengthening their overall performance for the company. For example, an executive of a specialist SEO marketing agency could go to a coach for clarity of their current competency. If the executive already has a goal, such as to attract more clients or to have a closer partnership with a current client, the coach could ask questions that would clarify those goals as well as identify what actions are needed to achieve them.

Leadership coaching and executive coaching are often thought to be synonymous, but the two different options still have their differences. Executive coaching focuses more on (although not limited to) those in senior positions such as CEO’s, executives, or board of directors. Executive coaching focuses more on how the leader can maximise their potential, as well as explores ways in which they can better the company. Leadership coaching, on the other hand, focuses more on the relationship between the leader and their team, with emphasis on how they can work together more effectively or how the leader can guide the team better.

There are many other different types of coaching such as career coaching, performance coaching, or life coaching for those both in leadership roles and non-leadership roles. For instance, a person may want to switch careers and work for a search marketing service. A career coach would be a great help as the coach can help that person with resume building, job searching, and even job interviews. Once an individual is able to find a job, they may need additional help to fit into the workplace. This is where a performance coach is a good option to seek out help integrating into the workplace. A performance coach would be able to provide support, as well as help develop and enhance the skills needed to be able to effectively complete the work.

One might think that coaching is only for those who are struggling with work, whether it is trouble fitting into the workplace or struggles to understand the work. With the many different types of coaching, however, even the highest-ranking leader in a company may need coaching to improve their work. In fact, seeking help could even be seen as a sign of strong leadership. This type of training can encourage a leader to acknowledge that they lack a certain skill and demonstrate that they are taking the initiative to better their current skill set in order to further the company’s progress. At the end of the day, none of us are perfect and we can all seek to improve our own skillset and work. A strong leader is often expected not to show any sign of weakness, however working to better one’s own performance at work should only be viewed in a positive light.

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