Let's put the age-long debate to rest- Are leaders born or created? In our humble opinion, with the right skills and the right tools, anyone can be a leader and we have just the right arguments to prove it.
Can Leadership Skills Be Learned?
If you are among the population who think that leaders are a different breed altogether then you are mistaken. The genetic makeup of both leaders and followers is the same. Hence, you can completely rule out the idea that leaders are superhuman. They are amongst us and who knows, you might be the next leader at the company you're working at.
Since it is established that everyone can be a leader, let's try to understand whether leadership skills can be learned or not?
It is true that every single one of us possesses some degree of leadership skills but polishing and honing those makes all the difference. Taking a look back in history, we see several different types of leaders who used their own leadership tactics; while some failed many passed the test of time and are still remembered for their brilliance.
According to experts, one must focus on 4 pillars of leadership to hone their skills and become the best leader one can be. Here are the 4 Leadership skills to learn:
A leader is at the top of the hierarchy and to be on the top means to be well versed at all the things a company does. Not only is it important for you as a leader to know completely what goes around the company but you must also excel in all these activities yourself. If you are not competent at what you do, you might not be able to earn the respect of your employees and that will result in mistrust in your leadership skills.
If you wish to be a leader, you need to brush up on your competency. Show the world exactly why you have been given the position that you have. One of the most important leadership skills is competency.
A leader is committed to both their jobs and their employees. One cannot expect a leader to be solely committed to your job as you are required to maintain a good work environment and lead your team to success. It is important for all leaders to exhibit commitment so that their employees take them for an example and try to follow what they do.
It may be strange to find courage here but it is very important to understand that there are often times where leaders have to take a leap of faith when making decisions. They need the courage to make these decisions as they may have to prepare for the worst-case scenario. It is not easy to make decisions that can result in poor outcomes, but as a leader, such decisions are important to make.
A leader is the head of the team. They need to be present-day in and day out without any fail. Consistency is a much important attribute if you are to lead a team of people and help them through the difficulties they might face at work.
If one is to master these skills, finding leadership roles may not be difficult. Other than these, there are other leadership skills that one should adopt. Here are to mention a few:
- Patience - As a leader you must have the patience to endure difficult situations. Your team looks up to you and if you do not exhibit patience, they might panic too.
- Dependability - A leader is someone, who employees can go to whenever they need to discuss something. The leader must be dependable so that employees can freely discuss their problems.
- Communication - Communication is a much important skill if you want to achieve the right kind of goals. Your team must be well aware of what your expect from them and how they can achieve it.
- Flexibility - Rigidity is a frowned upon characteristic if you are in the position of a leader. You must be flexible enough to address any issues that come up
- Empathy - Life has both ups and downs. Your team might go through some of the toughest times of their lives and you need to make sure as a good leader you are there to help them through it.
These skills make up a leader who can conquer the world and lead their team through any tempests that may come. Not only will these skills help you in being a good leader but they will also bear fruits in your personal life.
Why Leadership Skills Are Important?
Life is a game of snakes and ladders, we all wish to climb ladders and reach a position of success. With that being said, if you wish to excel in your life, it is very important to sharpen your leadership skills as you should always grow professionally rather than staying at a stagnant position. It is not good for your career growth as well as your finances. With the progression of life, you may have to experience different things and you cannot stay in the same professional space forever.
Furthermore, even if you don't wish to get a leadership position, your workplace might have some plans for you. They may see potential in you and would want to you to step up. If that happens, you must take the opportunity head-on and polish on your leadership skills so that you can do justice to the opportunity.
Leadership skills are an added asset that will help you excel in your professional life. It may bring you monetary benefits along with increased respect. If you display good leadership skills you may qualify for promotions more easily than your counterparts. Take initiatives to showcase your leadership skills and show your employers that you are ready to make the next jump in your career.
Where Can You Get A Leadership Skills Self Assessment?
If you are aiming to make the shift, you must first assess your leadership skills to know where you need to start with. There are several different questionnaires available online that can help you learn whether you have good leadership skills or if you need to strive hard and sharpen your skills to fit in the role in the best way possible.
These questionnaires usually ask you different situational questions where you have to respond assuming the role and once you are done, you can get the results instantly. Depending on the results you must start working towards improving your leadership skills.
You can find these tests online for free, to help you out, here is an example of the Leadership Skills Self Assessment you can take.
Do you want to become a leader some years along the way? When there is a will there is a way, all you need to do is to polish your leadership skills and you are good to go. Anyone who hones these skills can easily be a leader and fulfill their roles to the best of their ability.