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Top 7 Key Areas Of Successful Leadership

By Jonathan Farrington

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Veteran leaders can pass along valuable advice from their experience. In your leadership you can accelerate your effectiveness if you utilise basic tips such as the following:

  1. Stick to Subject You Know:

    Donít try to sound like an authority on subjects on which you are not sure. Stay on the track! Stay with those topics you have prepared to talk about and have the background and knowledge to impress your listeners favourably.

  2. Learn To Think Like a Leader:

    This means being ever on the alert for ideas, quotations, figures, benefits - anything you hear, read, see or think about that might be valuable as ammunition for you. Examples always help to sell your points; keep on the lookout for them.

  3. Prepare - Prepare Ė Prepare:

    Supposed leaders who have little worthwhile to say, have been known to resort to tricks and camouflage to make themselves look good! Dropping names - blaming others - using meaningless technical terms - lamenting the shortage of time - quoting mysterious authorities - all these devices have been used.

    Successful leaders agree, however, that the more you do your homework the less the need for any tricks. Know your material, prepare with care in advance - then you have confidence in your developed and natural leadership traits and skills.

  4. Motivating Your Team:

    Motivating is that leadership skill of developing other people to do a better job. Within every business there are recognised criteria for people development.

    What are these criteria for developing others (letís call them People Developers)?





    These four factors are inter-related and overlap. One factor may be more important to one individual than another. It is your job as a leader to ascertain what others require in their development.

  5. Achievement And Recognition:

    Satisfaction, a sense of personal accomplishment that a challenge has been met and the job has been well done. For most people, achievement is a reward in itself. It is the basic thing which spurs people to go and do a better job.

    How do you as a leader use achievement as a developer? If someone knows that they have achieved something, they must first know what is expected of them, a set goal, if they are to realise later they have achieved it or exceeded it. Thus, if you intend to use achievement as a developer you must be sure you clearly outline goals for your people to strive for.

    Recognition is closely related to achievement, it is meaningless unless earned. Recognition is an expression of approval or appreciation by others whose opinion and judgement is valued. Within the business world you have many ways to show recognition.

    A few being:-

    - Pins

    - Plaques

    - Money

    - Talks at Seminars and Meetings

    - Mentions in Company Literature

    - Titles

    Recognition and praise will show many unknown facets - like a diamond. Recognition polishes it and allows latent talent to shine out.

  6. Participation:

    People are more strongly motivated if they feel they have helped in the planning of their objectives rather than being told. They should feel as part of not only their own work but of the total group and Company.

    Remember inactivity is often caused by feelings of inadequacy. Participation can overcome this feeling of inadequacy.

  7. Growth:

    The person, who feels as if they are at a dead end, probably is. They must feel that there are the opportunities available for them to grow and that they are growing in experience, knowledge, skill and understanding. If we can help them start growing, the person will, in fact, exert more effort. Even the rewarding of others can achieve motivation because it shows that opportunity is available for growth.

Jonathan Farrington is the Managing Partner of The jfa Group jf-assocs.

Since forming jfa in 1995 he has authored in excess of three hundred skills development programmes, including the Strategic Workshops series, Channel Programme and the Vanguard suite. In addition he has designed a range of unique and innovative process tools Ė Optimus+ and ASP Profile and written extensively on organisational and sales team development.

Article Submitted On: July 14, 2006