Managing and leading people is highly rewarding when you have the tools to do it well, but most people learn as they go along, and often lose confidence in the process. So much about leadership is about managing relationships. If, in meetings you notice clashes, unhelpful behaviour and lack of co-operation, it is also happening on a daily basis.
An effective leader will listen and help the team respect each other and work together as a high functioning team. The leader, perhaps with the help of a coach, needs to engage the team in co-creating agreements around how we want to be together. We are all leaders and each person needs to take responsibility for their contribution to the team environment.
A team becomes successful when the Leader:
- Has a sense of purpose, shares their vision and helps the team align to that vision.
- Communicates openly, honestly and often. Be the boss who says: Good Morning, how are you today? And waits for the answer, rather that rushing through the office saying “Morning”.
- Make sure their Healthy Body language supports their words. If you say “I can give you all the time you need”, don’t constantly check your watch.
- Has clearly defined roles & responsibilities for each team member; and revisits them each time there is a change in team members.
- Conducts effective meetings whereby everyone is encouraged to contribute and listens to others points of view.
- Utilizes conflict by listening for what is trying to be said, beyond just the words, and encourages a culture of personal responsibility without blame or judgement.
- Reviews results and working practices while encouraging a sense of pride in personal achievements. Celebrating successes and coaching for further development.
- Is self-aware. Being mindful of the impact she/he is having on others and maintains a flexible approach.
- Builds strong relationships with others both inside and outside the organization. Every relationship counts.
- Leads by example. To be a leader you need followers. To thrive you want your people to follow you not because they have to, but because they want to.