Being a great leader is not easy. True leaders demonstrate valuable qualities that distinguish them from the ordinary people. They can shine through challenges, lead by example, and walk the talk.
The qualities of effective leaders are what make people trust them and look up to them for guidance. However, many of the leadership lessons are not taught in schools. Most of the time, you have to learn them through your life experiences.
Here are some of the essential leadership lessons we all need to learn.
1. Learn to listen
True leaders always listen before speaking. They speak less and listen more. Even though some people may be enthralled by your oration, the right audience will get inspiration from how sincerely your listen to them.
Greater leaders are active, attentive, and natural listeners. They know that wisdom is gained by listening. Their listening skill enables them to read between the lines and understand the problems of people from the subtle signals in their talks. They have the uncanny skill to understand what you are unable to express clearly.
2. Learn to keep calm in the face of adversity
While great leaders trust people, they are always ready to keep calm in the face of any negative situation, challenge, or adversity that may crop up. True leaders stay focused on their goals in any circumstances.
The British Government coined the phrase “Keep Calm and Carry On” in 1939 to lift the confidence of its population during a looming war with the Nazi Germany. That term was revived in the 20th century, and you can now see the catchphrase everywhere – on the Internet, on products, everywhere. This axiom and its history offer us a crucial leadership lesson; that is to stay calm under pressure. Panicking will not take you anywhere, staying calm will.
3. Learn to be courageous and honest
Great leaders are daring and in-character. Being courageous does not mean that they have no fear; it simply means they know how to face the fear more rationally than emotionally. They are honest and hold themselves to the highest levels of integrity.
When the leader is courageous and honest, it instills the same qualities in the followers. True leaders closely see and evaluate the danger, and when they reckon that their integrity and principles are at risk, they jump into the blaze to defend their values.
4. Learn to trust and respect people
Great leaders invest their trust in their people. They are aware that in order to achieve something bigger, they need to establish an air of mutual trust and respect in the first place. When they trust and respect people, they get the same in return.
The trust also makes the followers feel cherished and able to accomplish greater objectives. It lifts their spirit, and they work towards the higher goal with more responsibility and dedication.
Great leaders let their followers express themselves and their ideas without fear. They do this by creating a fear-free atmosphere of openness, creativity, and respect for opinions. Doing so not only motivates the people but also leads them to come up with creative ideas to solve problems and avail opportunities.