Leadership is an important role in society, and those who desire to lead should always strive to be the best they can be. But even as a leader, there are certain things you should stop doing to become a better leader. Here are the dos and don’ts of leadership.
The Dos of Leadership
Being a leader isn’t always about commanding your team members to do something, but also guiding them towards the best outcome with their combined efforts. Here are some important practices which you should always do if you’re a leader:
1) Do continue to learn and grow as a leader
Leaders should always be developing themselves and looking for new opportunities to expand their knowledge. They should be focused on continuous improvement by seeking out ways they can improve as managers, as people, and as professionals.
This is important because the only way you can help others grow is if you are also growing yourself! Being a leader who continues to learn and grow is attractive because it shows that you are open-minded, eager for new opportunities, and committed to your profession.
2) Do be decisive and take action when needed
Leaders need to be able to make decisions and take action to get things moving. You might not always have all the information you need, but it’s important to be able to make the best decisions possible with the information you do have.
A good example of this is how Neo Kian Hong sold his car when he stepped into his role as CEO of SMRT Corp., Singapore’s leading transport provider. Since he wouldn’t be able to understand the woes of the public if he’s in a private vehicle, he decided to be closer to the situation on the ground because he was committed to solving the problems they were facing.
3) Do be approachable and open to feedback
Leaders should always do their best to be approachable and welcoming to feedback. You need your team members to feel like they can come to you and express their concerns and opinions about how things are going.
This is important because if you aren’t open to feedback then you may be missing out on some great ideas that could help you improve as a leader. It’s also important for your team members to know that their opinions matter, and you’re willing to listen.
4) Do care about the big picture
While leaders need to get down and dirty with their team members, they should always keep the big picture in mind. That means thinking about how your specific actions will ultimately help you achieve your goals and get your work done.
This is important because it shows your team members that you have a sense of purpose and have the ability to see the bigger picture, even if the details of your work aren’t always clear to them.
The Don’ts of Leadership
There are some things that leaders should never do, or stop doing. After all, good leaders should know how to adapt to their ever-changing circumstances. So, here are some things you should always stop doing and work on if you want to become a better leader:
1) Stop micromanaging your team members
Leaders should never try to do their team members’ jobs for them. Your team members should have enough experience and training to complete their work successfully. If they need help, then it’s your job to offer guidance, not step in and do their jobs for them.
Your team members will appreciate that they are trusted to do their work, rather than being micromanaged. They’ll feel confident in themselves and their abilities, which will motivate them to work harder for you.
2) Stop being inflexible and unwilling to change
Leaders need to be open to new ideas and approaches for completing tasks. That means making a concerted effort to remain flexible in your approach by thinking creatively about how to get things done.
Being inflexible or unwilling to try new things is a great way to kill motivation among your team members. They’ll start to feel like they’re hitting a wall every time they try to take initiative, which will cause them to lose motivation.
3) Stop being defensive and closed-minded
Leaders should never get defensive when receiving feedback or criticism. Instead, take a deep breath and calmly ask for more information so you can fully understand the situation.
Taking criticism well is important because it shows that you are mature enough to take on feedback without having a defensive or emotional response. It also shows that you care about the thoughts and ideas of your team members, which will motivate them to work harder for you.
Becoming a good leader is all about being adaptable and knowing when to change your approach. Leaders who can do this will find that they can build better relationships with their team members, earn their respect, and achieve their goals more easily.