No matter what position you hold, leadership skills are valuable for moving you through your career and into a leadership role. Smart companies and employees know its critical to business survival to cultivate leadership skills at all levels.
During your career, you will learn myriad leadership skills, but the following tips should give your career a jump-start:
Show enthusiasm. Personal energy is contagious, and so is the lack of it. No matter what the job, complete it with a sense of urgency. When others notice, they too will become enthusiastic.
Build optimism. Negativity in the workplace is destructive. Your boss doesnt want to hear whats wrong with a project; he wants to hear your suggestions for making it better.
Be flexible. You cant survive in business today while resisting change. Show you can handle change by volunteering for a new project or by helping others with change.
Co-operate. Since companies must do more with fewer resources, teamwork is essential. If you insist on having your own way or controlling others, your career will run into a brick wall.
Be creative. What process can be improved? How can you make things easier for customers? Use your creativity to continuously improve processes, and you will stand out.
Lead the way
Once you get the call to serve in a leadership role, you need to make some adjustments to your library of skills:
Delegate whenever possible. Give projects to the right employees and dont micromanage them.
Dedication is a critical skill in your first leadership role. Eight hours of work is not enough to show dedication. Spend a minimum of 12 hours per day on your job or your self-improvement.
Ask your peers for advice. When you are new to a leadership position, you dont know everything. Identify your most respected peers, and ask them how they have succeeded.
The next level
When youve shown you are worthy of upward movement, you will need an additional set of skills for success:
Become a mentor. As you have learned along the way, you should share that knowledge with others. Look for enthusiastic employees and spend time cultivating them.
Share celebrations with your employees. Nothing inspires a team more than knowing you appreciate everyones hard work.
Give back to the community that made you successful. Get involved in the local community by making donations and volunteering. What you give out comes back to you twofold.
If you start cultivating your leadership skills, moving up will be much easier. If you realise how many times you provide guidance at work, it would be easy to realise you are a leader no matter what your current position is.