Leadership isn’t about a title or a position you hold on an org chart. Leadership is about the actions you take day in and day out.
Exceptional leaders do things many things that average or mediocre leaders don’t do. Whether you are building an organization, rebuilding a department or simply want to make an impact, there are 12 skills all great leaders share. Use this list to help you become an exceptional leader.
Here are 12 skills all great leaders share:
- Communication skills are stellar. All exceptional leaders have communication skills that are first rate. They understand how important communication is. They use communication as a tool to drive their organization to success.
- Delegation is second nature. Delegating is not something they think about, the just do it naturally. Their own success is measured not by what they do but by what others accomplish through their guidance and leadership.
- Failure is allowed. This is not to say that failure is accepted with an ‘oh well’ attitude. But exceptional leaders know that learning includes making mistakes. If there are no mistakes they are not taking risks.
- A sense of humor. A leader must learn how to take it easy at times and find something funny in every situation. Don’t take everything seriously, laugh at hurdles, and always have a good sense of humor to lighten up the entire team.
- Confidence in yourself, even when you don’t know the answer. The moment you lose your confidence as a leader, the entire team will go crashing down. Your team looks up to you for direction and morale, and if you fail to give that to them then your team is in big trouble.
- Commitment and accountability at all levels. Leadership takes a great deal of commitment to the team, to the company and to yourself. Accountability is essential to getting things done and that starts with the leader.
- Be Authentic and consistent. Every action you take speaks to who you are as a leader. Share your values and expectations, and be consistent in your actions and your words.
- Unwilling to accept status quo or dysfunction. When there is dysfunction in an organization everyone knows it. Pretending it doesn’t exist or ignoring it creates a culture of mediocrity and complacency. Shaking things up, addressing challenges and finding ways to make a difference something that all great leaders do.
- Be a constant learner. All exceptional leaders are constant learners. They have what I call a beginners mind where they never assume they know everything or even most things and are constantly focusing on learning and growing personally and professionally themselves.
- Learn how to hire top talent. Many leadership challenges exist because of hiring the wrong people for the culture and/or not successfully onboarding them.
- Learn to inspire. One of the best of the 12 skills all great leaders share. It is so important to know how to inspire your team. Bring out the best in everyone and encourage him or her to try even harder knowing that they have so much potential.
- Build a culture of fun, creativity, and cohesiveness. What are the common denominators of great companies? They create a culture where people can be creative and grow. The environment is fun and the team is cohesive. It’s not an accident when this occurs, exceptional leaders build it.
Exceptional leaders recognize that the actions they take day in and day out have a huge impact on the people. These 12 skills that all great leaders share can help you become one of them. They know that even if you are born with natural talent as a leader you have to build on that talent and never ever be satisfied.