Whether you like it or not, the success of your career is linked to how good a leader you are. The quality of your leadership is what will enable you to get things done, get noticed, and make progress.
While there is no shortcut to success, there are tips you can use to get the results you’re after. For example, you can get ideas from today’s successful leaders.
With that, here are 7 great leadership traits that will make you successful in no time.
1Prioritize Developing Others
If you want to be successful, you need to make sure that the people working for you are doing their best. Just take healthcare professionals as an example.
A 2010 study showed that healthcare leaders who prioritized developing others were more effective. Such leaders can create a working environment that can reduce stress and boost productivity.
So, put your team first and work out what they need.
2Check Your Assumptions
Organizations tend to stick to what works. That’s fine when the going’s good, but looking in the rearview mirror won’t help if you’re heading toward a dead end.
Jeffrey Pfeffer argues that successful leaders are able to look beyond shared assumptions. The best leaders aren’t convinced by reports telling them what they already know.
Instead, successful leaders keep their heads up and listen to what their customers and team members tell them. The question they ask is: “Does that feel true?”
3Focus on Results
How do you know if you’re doing a good job?
Well, there are a lot of ways to answer that question but successful leaders always focus on the results they’re getting.
Take a leaf out of Stacey Barr’s book and look for objective measures. They’ll teach you how to focus on the most important outcomes so you can see what improvements are needed.
Then you can zero in and push performance to a new level.
4Emphasize Teamwork and Collaboration
How does it feel to receive great service?
It’s golden, right?
The secret to every great service experience is that the people responsible for it have learned how to collaborate and work as a team. In most cases, outstanding service isn’t the result of just a single person’s efforts.
You can learn how to be the kind of team leader everyone wants to please. Do what Jim Collins suggests and let every success be the team’s and let every failure be your own.
5Inspire and Motivate
John P. Kotter considers these two traits as keys to a leader’s success.
It’s important to set a direction people will follow. However, instead of just pointing people towards that direction, it’s better to make them want to do what’s necessary to get there.
Successful leaders spend time engaging with people and mingling with their teams. They sell their vision and create enthusiasm and commitment. You can start by staying positive and encouraging everyone you meet.
6Be A Great Experimenter
How did eBay become successful? Do you think its leaders had a plan?
Interestingly, eBay’s CEO Meg Whitman tells a different story. What made the difference for eBay was trying and tweaking things that felt like they might work.
Leaders who win big understand that you can’t predict the future. It’s better to keep testing and learning from what doesn’t work as much as from what does.
Sounds like you’d better buy that white lab coat.
7Be Honest and Tell It Like It Is
Think about the leaders you admire the most. I’ll bet one of the qualities you’ll see is that they have integrity. They do what they say they’ll do and hold themselves to a higher standard.
So, if you want to be a leader, one that other people are ready to die in a ditch for, you’d better be ready to walk the talk.
Everyone’s different and we all have strengths and weaknesses we need to work on.
Working out exactly which leadership traits to develop means developing a better understanding of yourself. You’re unique and your challenges won’t be the same as the next person.
What you can be confident about, however, is that if you develop these 7 great leadership traits, you’ll be following the footsteps of some of the most successful leaders in the world.
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Author: Adam Cairns
Professor Adam Cairns, CEO Hamad Medical City Hospitals, Doha, Qatar. I'm the blogger behind The Healthy Leader Blog http://healthyleaderblog.com/, which aims to help you do more, be happy and stay healthy.