New Year Resolutions: Developing Your Leadership Skills
Whether you believe in resolutions or not, the end of each year is a wonderful time to self-reflect and set your goals for the upcoming year. Especially if you are leading an organization, you should always strive to find ways to be a good leader for your employees. In this article, we have gathered 8 tips that will help you develop your leadership skills and make the necessary changes to help your team grow.
8 Skills You Can Hone To Be A Good Leader In 2022
1. Communicate Your Goals
A new year signifies setting new goals that help you achieve your general business goals. Therefore, before the year wraps up, make sure you know what you’re aiming for in the next. But if you want to be a good leader, you need to keep everyone in the loop. Often, leaders assume that their team already sees the big picture, only to realize later on that goal alignment wasn’t their company’s forte. So, develop a sense of shared purpose by sharing your vision with your team and including them in the conversation about what steps you’ll collectively take to achieve it.
2. Delegate Effectively
A good leader knows the importance of surrounding themselves with a skilled team that they can count on. Make it your goal this year to empower others by trusting them to take responsibility without you hovering over them. Besides, when you offer your team autonomy, you’re creating the leaders of tomorrow. However, delegation on its own is not enough; it also has to be effective. Namely, make sure to match assignments to the right people, communicate needs and expectations, and offer guidance when necessary.
3. Support Your Employees In Their Development Efforts
Growth is a crucial aspect of New Year resolutions, as well as an important factor of employee satisfaction. Leaders acting indifferent or unsupportive toward the professional development efforts of their employees usually leads to negative feelings and high employee turnover. This year, flip the script by offering certification courses or mentorship programs and by discussing with them their individual goals and areas of interest. Most importantly, to be a good leader, you should never stop wondering how you can help your team become better.
4. Nurture Innovation
Innovation is crucial for any business that wants to remain relevant and successful in its field. Running an innovative business could refer to utilizing technology to facilitate everyday operations. For example, CRM, project management, or time tracking software can help streamline processes and make your business more efficient. Another crucial aspect of innovation that helps you be a good leader is encouraging innovation. Specifically, a good leader identifies innovators within their company and gives them space and motivation to express their ideas.
5. Embrace Accountability
Accountability is often painted in a negative light in the corporate world. Many feel that it is the downside that comes with taking on responsibilities. However, by being a good leader, you can turn accountability into a useful tool by focusing on giving your employees ownership over their decisions. The right amount of autonomy allows them to handle any problems that might arise in their own way. In addition, as employees naturally start feeling more accountable for their actions, you can take a step back and leave managerial pressure on the side.
6. Break Down Barriers
A business can have all sorts of barriers: literal, such as walls and distance, or metaphorical, such as bureaucracy, hierarchy, technology, etc. If you want to be a good leader, you need to identify these barriers and break them down. You can’t expect your team to grow and find better ways to achieve your business goals if the existence of red tape discourages them from expressing their creative ideas. If remote working is causing distance, establish more time for face-to-face meetings, even if they’re virtual. In any case, this is your chance to examine your company policy and culture and figure out how to help your team take more initiative.
7. Recognize Contribution
A good leader knows that every team member is valuable, and all contributions—big or small—must be rewarded. Considering that promotions and salary increases (although welcome) are not too frequent, you must find other ways to show your appreciation. A word of recognition goes a long way, and it can make your team feel more motivated and appreciated. If your company is too big, you can use tools like peer recognition and bi-weekly or monthly employee recognition programs. The latter could offer more substantial rewards, such as gift cards. The impact on your team will be tremendous and will soon translate to your productivity levels.
8. Lead By Example
You could create a great company culture and encourage your employees to grow and become more productive using just your words. But good leaders don’t rely on more than talking. They become the model others can look up to and become motivated to give their best. Instead of explaining what the desired behavior is, demonstrate it. If communication is important to you, establish an open-door policy. If you want to nurture innovation, set up brainstorming sessions where you express your innovative ideas and encourage others to express their own. Ultimately, if you openly embrace next year’s resolutions, your team will follow.
As the year comes to an end, we all want to set our expectations and the goals we want to achieve. As a leader, your personal goals always encompass ways to make your company a better place for your team to grow. Communication, support, innovation, and recognition, are only a few of the skills we talked about in this article that you can hone to be a good leader in 2022. What will your new year’s business resolutions look like?