5 Fundamentals for New Leaders
The fundamentals of leadership can be challenging to learn. They can be a bit tricky at first, and they're worth it in the long run. That's why we've put together this list of five fundamentals for new leaders.
1. Mindset Matters
Consider your mindset to be the lens through which you see the world. Your mindset is not a personality trait; it’s something you can choose to change, and that choice will transform everything from how well you perform your job to how well you enjoy life.
Mindset is everything in leadership because no matter how good a leader you are, if your mindset isn’t right, it won't matter what kind of leader or person you are otherwise. If your mindset isn't right, then nothing else matters either: not talent nor experience nor wisdom nor relationships with others.
In fact, if there’s one piece of advice, I could give to anyone who wants more out of life—whether they're a new leader or an old veteran—it's this: It's all about having an open mind and learning new things every day!
2. Set goals
Defining clear and measurable goals for the tangibles… you know the drill: “Increase sales by 20%” are important however, we mustn’t forget about the intangibles as well.
How will you show up every day?
How will you feel at the end of your day, week, or month?
Have you made a difference in someone else’s world?
Setting goals should be all encompassing to include your work and life in general. Yes, create your SMART goals remembering to also create the others…you are more than what you do. Working towards and achieving the intangibles will have far greater benefit and increases overall satisfaction.
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3. Communication counts
Communication is key to leadership because it enables you to connect with the people who are within your charge as well as all those around you. Effective communication means that everyone involved in a project has access to information and understands their role in achieving its goals. Communication can take many forms: written, verbal and nonverbal signals like facial expressions or body language. The most important thing is that you listen as well as talk; if your team feels like they're not being heard by their leader, then they'll probably start looking elsewhere for support and guidance!
4. Leadership is a Team Sport
Leadership is not a solo sport and requires the entire team to win. Leaders cannot do it all on their own because they don't have all of the resources or time in the world on their side (you can’t do everything yourself). That's why good leaders build an effective team around them that can help them achieve the overarching goals and objectives.
5. Lead with Heart
Although #5 on this list, it is THE most important skill of any great leader. Leading with heart is about connecting with people, being authentic and being human. It's about caring for your team members and helping them learn from their mistakes, grow, and improve themselves as leaders so they can be successful in the long run. It's also about understanding that no one is perfect, so you need to be open-minded when working with others who may not agree with you at first but have good intentions overall. You'll need to set clear expectations of what is and isn't acceptable behavior within the organization (a code of conduct) but also understand that there will be times when exceptions need to be made due to extenuating circumstances or personal situations outside of work.
The fundamentals of leadership can be a bit tricky at first, and they're worth learning.
Leadership is a skill that can be learned. It's not something that you're born with or not, rather it's something you learn through experience and understanding.
Leadership is a way of being, not a title nor a position. Leaders aren't always the people at the top of the org chart; they can be anyone who has influence over others' thoughts and actions—whether that's in an official capacity or informally through their own personal networks.
Leadership is about helping others succeed by setting the right tone and direction for your team to follow, whether it's guiding them toward success or away from failure.
The fundamentals of leadership can seem difficult at first, but once you've mastered them, your ability to lead will improve dramatically!
Now that you know the fundamentals, it's time to get started. Remember that leadership is a lifelong journey—one that will help you achieve your goals and serve others along the way. The best thing about these five fundamentals is how easy they are to learn! Just take one habit at a time and implement it into your life. From there, everything else will come naturally as you continue this journey of growth.
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