Developing your leadership abilities includes many factors, including professionalism, knowledge, expertise, communication, and other elements that will help you become a better leader.
But one of the essential elements of being a leader is cultivating relationships with colleagues and employees. You’re missing an opportunity to connect with your team if you rush from meeting to meeting and race down the halls without saying hello to people you pass. (Obviously, do everything in moderation. If you need to be somewhere in a hurry, that’s they’ll get it!)
Here are four suggestions to help you cultivate your image as a leader. I’m sure you’ve heard these before, but I felt it was time to write a reminder to my lovely leaders out there!
1) Calm Down
2) Slow Down
3) Talk Less
4) Listen More
If you appear calm and confident in every situation — even if you aren’t — you will inspire faith in your leadership. Your employees and colleagues want to believe you are in charge and know what you are doing in emergency situations. Just the appearance of being unruffled and unfazed by the latest crisis will help your team remain calm and focused on their jobs.
Slowing down and walking normally instead of rushing from to meeting and meeting will inspire confidence. There may be times when you really do need to run, but for the most part, give yourself time to get to each session without appearing unorganized and unready. For online meetings, take a few moments to decompress and gather your thoughts. If you have time, get up and walk around a bit!
The suggestions to “talk less” and “listen more” go hand in hand. In team meetings or one-on-one conversations, allow the other person to complete their thoughts or explanation before interjecting your ideas. Don’t talk over the other person! Listen closely to what is and is not said during a conversation. What information has been left out that is necessary to make a good decision?
Even if you have years of leadership experience, it never hurts to be reminded of the basics from time to time!
This post was originally published on my LinkedIn profile. Connect and follow me for more career and job search advice!