Establishing a business takes tenacity, creativity, and determination. When it comes to leading a company, you need a different set of characteristics to ensure a prosperous and healthy working environment.
Without effective leadership, all other aspects of the business will deteriorate. A strong business leader will make sure that productivity is maximised and that the right people are hired for the job.
Five skills can help make you an effective business leader:
Communication Is Key
Good leadership is complete transparency and ensuring that all employees are in the loop with the activities in the business that could affect them. Imagine this: There have been retrenchments at a company. Of course, there is chatter amongst employees. No one has communicated anything, and now the rumours are running rampant throughout the office. This causes anxiety and distrust among staff members.
In this case, good leadership is letting staff know about why the retrenchments have taken place (to help with rumour control) and to ease their uncertainty going forward. How you communicate this is also important. Will an email work? Perhaps, but maybe chatting to them in person would be better.
When you communicate to employees, always be clear and concise – whether it’s in email form or face-to-face. You’ll find that employees will be more engaged and motivated once they share your vision.
Be Very Supportive
When you think about leadership, the word ‘supportive’ isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. Traditionally, leaders would assign employees a task and have them run with it. With supportive leadership, it involves collaboration and continuous mentorship.
Why does this style of leadership work? There’s a saying that people leave bad managers and not a job. In today’s workplace, employees want to feel valued, supported, and work on something that will make an impact. Supportive leadership means that you are showing a general interest in the employees that work with you, and by doing this, you gain their loyalty.
Traditional leadership would say that empathy is a weakness. However, in today’s workplace, empathetic leadership can help cultivate a harmonious working environment. How do you lead with compassion? By really listening to your employees’ needs. This means paying attention to your body language, your tone of voice, and taking note of the emotional tone of your employees’.
Empathetic leadership also means being present and providing everyone with a voice to air their concerns. For those who lead traditionally, this could be a waste of time. However, by actively listening to your employees, you gain their loyalty, and in turn, they are motivated to achieve business goals.
As a business owner, you’ll be making plenty of decisions – everything involving finances to hiring. Some of the decisions will be uncomfortable, which is why effective decision-making is an essential skill within the leadership.
So what does effective leadership decision-making entail? It means a leader will look at the facts and always explore the best options when it comes to a solution. A good leader will also be confident in their decisions and never procrastinate.
The best way to gain these skills is to develop them. You can do this by practising in the workplace or by signing up for online courses to help build your leadership and management skills.