I was nervous walking into the room.
All seven of the men and women were confident and successful leaders of local, national or global businesses.
I knew I was invited because of my team’s ideas and writing around leadership development. I took one last deep breath and walked into the room.
I was met with open minds and hearts when I began asking questions about their leadership beliefs and habits.
These leaders were open to sharing their experiences, best practices, and wanted to pass along knowledge.
I heard many great things that morning. One commonality was, they all attributed his or her good fortune in leadership success to more than just being born that way. One actually quoted Vince Lombardi:"Leaders aren't born, they are made. And they are made just like anything else, through hard work. And that's the price we'll have to pay to achieve that goal, or any goal."
After the meeting, it became evident to me all great leaders point to some combination of habits for how they honed their skills to be what they are today and what they will be like in the future. A habit by definition is a routine or behavior that is repeated regularly and tends to occur unconsciously. Here are 5 habits of confident and successful leaders.
- Focus on Themselves. It’s impossible to lead a team without first leading yourself. There are two critical areas: First, spend time taking care of your own mental, physical and spiritual well-being. Second, become self-aware. Being self-aware is critical to understanding and keeping yourself honest about your own strengths and weaknesses.
- Lead by Example. One of my favorite sayings is, “kids hear what you say, but they believe what you do.” Employees and team members are they same way. The effort, passion, knowledge, and work ethic you show or do is what motivates and inspires teams.
- Understand the Pulse of the Team. You can’t fix a problem until you know it exists. When you’re driving towards a goal, it’s so easy to lose sight of team morale and what is going on in the trenches. Pay attention and track team morale. Then make calculated decisions based on the current situation.
- Take Responsibility and Gives Accolades. When bad things happen, confident leaders start their sentences with “I”. Conversely when good things happen they start them with “We” or “They”. Take responsibility when bad things happen regardless of who is at fault. When great things happen, be the first to give praise to your team.
- Provide Structure. In today’s work from home, do it on your own world, it’s not easy to have conviction, rules, and or guidelines. But by providing these things consistently and keeping them front and center, people will respond positively.
If you want to become a more successful and confident leader, begin by consciously implementing these 5 habits until they eventually become unconscious and an integral part of how you lead.