Core Skills for Leaders
Core Skills for Leaders
Leadership is the ability of motivating others to take positive action towards a goal and achieve it. Leadership involves self-awareness and empathy, the ability to build relationships and drive to achieve goals.
1. Strategic Thinking Skills
Strategic thinkers are able to see the whole picture and not get distracted by small details or side issues. Their decisions will be influenced by their answers to the question, “Does this get me closer to where my goal is?” Leaders must be able communicate their vision to others.
The most important skill that a leader must have and what truly distinguishes managers from leaders is the ability to think strategically.
2. Planning and Delivery Skills
It is important to be organised as a leader. However, it is even more important that you can plan and deliver for your organisation.
These are core management skills. But the best leaders will be able turn their hand to them. Without a plan to make it a reality, even the most brilliant vision is useless.
You must also think strategically and plan your actions. This is essential to achieving your vision and strategy. Both leaders and managers can benefit from project management and planning. It is important to manage risk and prevent things from going wrong.
Because it is at the heart of all leader’s activities, decision-making is a key leadership skill. Good leaders know when they should make decisions for themselves and when they should consult their peers or team members to get their opinions on a particular matter. And, perhaps most important, when it’s best to let others decide.
4. Share a compelling vision
Your company’s vision is what you want your company to look like in the future. It is based on your goals and aspirations. This is why people will continue to work for you.
Leaders must be able communicate the vision of the company in a compelling manner. It must be compelling enough to get the attention of all employees and candidates.
5. Change Management
Organisations are constantly changing. Some changes are quick and others last for a long time. This is evident in the digitisation and automation processes that many companies are currently undergoing.
Leaders who are effective know how to support and guide their employees through organisational changes.
6. Interpersonal skills
Also known as soft skills or people skills, interpersonal skills can also be called people skills. These include active listening, receiving and giving feedback, non-verbal communication, problem solving skills, and teamwork.
7. Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence refers to our ability understand and manage emotions. It also involves our ability to manage and understand our emotions.
8. Being a trustworthy coach and being a good coach
Leaders must be able to do many things for many people. Being a coach is one of these. This includes being able to push people outside their comfort zones, providing feedback, and helping them find their vision.
Trustworthiness is important here. This is not only because it is essential for successful coaching relationships. Leaders must also be able to build and maintain strong relationships with their employees.
Leaders who are good at creating a welcoming environment for employees will be successful. They ensure that everyone is treated with respect and dignity, has equal access to resources and opportunities, and that they can thrive. Good leaders are inclusive.
- A visible commitment – To diversity, challenge and hold others accountable.
- Humility – They are humble about their capabilities and admit to making mistakes.
- Awareness of bias – They are aware of their own blind spots and the flaws in our system. They work hard to create a meritocracy.
- Curiosity about Others – They are open to learning about others and listen without judgement. They seek out empathy in order to understand the world around them.
10. People management
Good people management is essential when leading others. This depends on the level of leadership. It involves overseeing the training, development and motivation of employees.
Leaders who are good at people management give their team the five c’s: clarity, context consistency, consistency, courage and commitment.
- Altruism is when an employee gives or helps another employee without expecting any return.
- Courtesy is polite, considerate behavior toward others. You can show courtesy by greeting your coworkers, saying hello, and asking them about their holidays, their children, or how the project is going.
- Sportsmanship – It is the ability to handle situations that aren’t as expected and not to display negative behavior when they do occur.
- Conscientiousness – In a workplace, this is not just about showing up on time and sticking to deadlines. It also means that employees plan ahead, such as before going on holiday, so that colleagues don’t get overwhelmed by a heavy workload.
- Civic virtue – It’s about the way an employee supports their company even when they are not working there. Employees can show civic virtue by signing up to participate in fundraisers or running a (semi-) marathon for charity with a group of coworkers.
There is much debate about what makes a leader, or what leadership skills are. While it is obvious that leadership requires a variety of skills, different styles and characteristics are required to be effective.
There is no right or wrong way to lead in every situation. One of the key characteristics of great leaders is their ability to be flexible and adapt to changing situations. Employers are looking for leadership skills because they require the ability to interact with people in a way that motivates, inspires and builds respect.