You can take as many leadership courses as you like, but at the end of the day, if you can’t inspire and lead yourself, you won’t be able to do the same for others. It’s that simple – and stark – and it also highlights the difference between those that do become great leaders and those that don’t. With this in mind, let’s take a look at a few of the ways that you can start leading yourself, to get to a position where you can inspire, motivate, and become a successful leader of others.
Unleash your passion
First of all, there has to be a raw, burning passion inside you if you want to be a great leader. We’re not saying you have to bounce around the place like an excited puppy – although it can sometimes help – more that your passion for your business has to shine through in everything you do. Without that passion, ultimately, you will find that your heart just isn’t in it, and the people looking up to you will spot it from a mile away.
To lead yourself, you need complete self-awareness. You must understand your strengths and weaknesses, know the limits of your skills, and also have a firm understanding of your values. However, becoming self-aware is a lot harder than you might think. Everyone has an opinion about their own characters – some will overhype themselves, and others sell themselves short. But to become a great leader, you have to be able to see the truth. Business coaches can help you here – or, perhaps, even a therapist. But if you want to inspire others then your opinion of yourself needs balancing.
Learning, development, and inspiration
Great leaders never stop learning or finding inspiration from others. The learning process opens up new ways of working and seeing the world, and inspiration creates opportunities you didn’t know existed. Whether it’s finding a mentor or even just sticking up leadership quotes on your office wall, it’s vital to be inspired. Self-development will keep you happier, challenge you, and give you new goals to achieve every single day.
Focus and drive
To be a great leader, you need to be laser-focused on the tasks at hand and have the drive and determination to see things through. You will have tough decisions to make on a daily – maybe even hourly – basis, and it can be easy to become overwhelmed. Flexibility is necessary, of course, but focus doesn’t necessarily equate with rigidity – it means always keeping the endgame in mind and making the right decisions to get there.
Open and honest
Finally, be honest and open with yourself as much as you are with your employees. As every business leader knows, having an open door policy for team members is a great way to create a positive company culture. But you also need to give yourself that space to ask questions, explore new ideas, and even, in some cases, give yourself the opportunity to get some help. Ultimately by being open and honest with yourself, you will be more able to be the same for others – and be seen as the great leader you aspire to.