As you grow from an emerging leader to a first time leader, and then continue on to senior and executive levels, these are the skills that will make all the difference in how you lead those around you – lifting the performance of your teams, your company, and even your community.
Women have many of these skills naturally, and we’re already using them in our daily lives. When we become aware of them and amplify them, we can be at our best as a leader.
The skills covered in this series are adapted from See Jane Lead, by New York Times best-selling author Lois Frankel, Ph.D. Each article will delve into a particular skill, along with tips on creating the right mindset and behaviors for your success.
We’ll cover how great women leaders:
- Create vision – They have a strong, clear vision of the possibilities, and articulate that vision so well that they inspire others to come along for the journey.
- Balance the strategic with the tactical – If you look at the success or failure of any company, any initiative, or any team, it comes down to both strategy and tactics. Strategy without tactics is like a goal with no specific direction. Tactics without strategy . . . well, that leaves you feeling like you just ran a marathon on a hamster wheel. The very best leaders have a strong understanding of both strategy and tactics. They set the strategy, and build strong teams to bring that strategy to life.
- Take smart risks – Successful leaders have a willingness to venture into the unknown. They do so in a smart way though, using tools to help them make those decisions with a level of confidence and clarity to move forward. Sometimes that risk is a baby step, and sometimes it’s a giant leap – and great leaders have to do both.
- Are inspirational – Do you remember the best leader you’ve ever had? That person may be someone you grew up with, like a teacher or coach, or it could be someone from a current or past job position. Chances are that he or she ignited something within you that allowed you to be more and do more than you ever thought possible.
- Are influential – I think Dr. Frankel captured it in See Jane Lead:
“Women have influenced the course of history – not always as the people with formal power, but as the ones who effected change through their words and deeds. One of the things that makes us so good at it is that we frequently remove [our] ego from the equation. We don’t try to push others in a particular direction; we try to pull them. Push takes muscle. Pull takes influence.”With that said, women leaders could benefit from becoming more consistent with exercising influence – and in the process becoming more comfortable with being that influential woman leader.
- Build strong teams – Women are natural collaborators, and building high-performing teams is an extension of that natural ability. For every great success there’s a great team, and there are specific mindsets and steps to building that team.
- Have strong emotional intelligence – Great leaders possess a keen sense of self-awareness, as well as an awareness of those around them. This creates more productive relationships, team camaraderie, and results.
- Think like an entrepreneur – Those who lead the most innovative and successful teams in any organization have a little entrepreneurial blood running through their veins. Entrepreneurs have a lot to teach us about being better leaders, and many of those lessons are adaptable to our enterprises, so that we become “intrapreneurs.”
Your path to a successful and fulfilling leadership track is within your reach. Look for upcoming articles in this series to dive deeper into each of these skills!
Visit https://amyfranko.com for more information about custom training solutions and professional development services offered by Impact Instruction Group. Amy Franko also works with emerging women leaders, teaching concepts from the international best-sellers Nice Girls Don’t Get the Corner Office and See Jane Lead to many national companies and organizations.
© 2012 Impact Instruction Group
© See Jane Lead is the copyright of Lois Frankel, Ph.D.
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