How To Develop Leadership Skills
I’ve made people angry. They’ve been upset. Disappointed. Sad.
People will point the finger. Point blame.
We’re all victims of the attribution bias, where we tend to attribute our successes to internal factors and attribute our failures to external means.
I’ve been this person as well.
Angry. Upset. Mad.
We can change our behavior. We can take accountability for our actions, no matter what the situation is.
If we take the time, we can develop an understanding of just about anything.
It’s hard to be introspective.
Humans will be human.
No matter how hard you try, there will always be someone who thinks differently than you.
As humans, we’re controlled by our emotions, and as a leader, you must understand this.
The first skill you must learn is empathy.
Everything else in leadership is easy.
Learning how to coach. Ask questions. Train. Plan for the future. Keeping your team accountable. Holding productive meetings. Compensation. Sales. Marketing.
Although, in the “The Dichotomy of Leadership,” Jocko Willink and Leif Babin talk about various topics that can be difficult to grasp if you’re starting out as a “new” leader.
It takes time.
You’re going to have difficult conversations.
You’re going to make tough decisions.
No matter what the situation is, you have to empathize with the other person.
As a leader, it all falls on you. Be okay with that.
You need time, patience, the ability to learn and apply.
The one thing you need to develop excellent leadership skills is time.
I’ve screwed up many times.
Mostly because I’m not patient.
Over a decade of leading, I’ve been able to slow down and look at the bigger picture. I still struggle with patience.
People move at different paces. Learn at different speeds. They need different things.
The best thing I’ve ever done for my career was to hire a coach.
He helps keep me accountable, focused and see the things while I’m trapped in my own head.
One of the best pieces of advice I’ve learned as a leader is drip, don’t drown.
Meaning, lead people slower. Don’t drown them with too much information or too many goals.
If you’re serious about developing your leadership skills, the best way is to hire a coach.
Just like with anything, you need a great coach to be a great player.
In can be a coach on your current team, or you can hire one.
You can also read the five best leadership books and start practicing what you learn.
Here are my leadership book recommendations:
Sales Leadership (can apply to any role)
Once you’ve started learning from experts in leadership, set yourself a goal, and begin working to achieve it.
Get feedback from your team.
Once you’ve become proficient at one leadership skill, adjust and move on to the next leadership skill.
Developing leadership skills takes time. The best way to start developing them is now. Don’t overthink it and start doing.