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Effective Leadership - developing leadership skills in you!

Updated on July 7, 2011

No one is a born leader. As no musicians are born great musicians. However, both are born with the leadership potential to be such.

But what does Effective Leadership mean?


Effective team leaders are credible, having the trust and confidence of their people. They have a reputation of doing what they say they will do. They consistently keep their promises and follow through on their commitments.They create a trusting and open climate while helping others to feel empowered and to be successful. Successful leaders display honesty, sincerity, integrity, and candor in all their actions and shows high consistency between word and deed.

Knowledge reflects experience within a subject but intelligence knows what to do with that knowledge to reach a goal. Strong leadership skills rests on Executive Intelligence, which comprises of problem solving capability (practical intelligence), understanding of people (social intelligence) and self-evaluation and adjustment skills (emotional intelligence). Leaders gather, formulate, integrate and interpret large amounts of data and still are able to create visions and solve problems. They demonstrate their intelligence by gently leading people toward understanding–even when they know the answer. One of the best ways leaders exhibit intelligence is by asking questions and learning from the people they lead.

Social Maturity
Those with strong leadership skills tend to be emotionally mature, self confident, understands the nature of the social world they live in and have an understanding of what enables them to function as healthy individuals. These leaders foster greater pride in the organization, a stronger spirit of cooperation and teamwork, and more feelings of ownership and personal responsibility.

Leaders have a high desire to achieve things and work towards targets and goals. They are ambitious and have a lot of energy in tirelessly pursuing their objectives. To achieve their goals, leaders know that they are reliant on the people around them to help them get there. They work on gaining support, influencing and inspiring others, persuading other people to become their champions, engage people's imagination and most importantly, create relationships. These leaders base their actions on reason and moral principles. They do not make decisions based on childlike emotional desires or feelings. They have a desire to differentiate themselves, to make their mark. Great leaders show endurance in mental, physical, and spiritual areas, they also inspire others to reach for new heights, to continue even when the going gets tough, to persevere and to succeed.

People want to follow someone who is competent. A leader does not need to be the foremost expert on every area of the entire organization, but they need to be able to demonstrate competency. There is no substitution for the ability to perform. It's all about doing. Doing the things that you know to your core is the right thing to do regardless of what the market is telling you. Competent leaders aren't looking first for personal gain and they aren't looking at the uncontrollable negatives all businesses face. Real competence is visible in tough times and leaders who are willing to make the hard decisions or who have the confidence to stay with the vision will shine in the darkest times. Competence is also about being able to admit mistakes and grow from those errors, publicly and openly. Competent leaders have the ability to see the full view of any situation and with great frequency can deliver just the right outcome at just the right time.

Zig Ziglar Video: Ethical Leadership

So, how does one think like an effective leader?

There is no set strategy on how to develop leadership skills, but to set yourself on the path, here are some thoughts:

Coaching, Seminars or Courses
Know your strengths and weaknesses as a person. Note the above list of leadership qualities and ensure that you learn and start using these skills in order that you become the natural choice for advancement and promotion. You need to learn how to develop your interpersonal skills, become more emotionally intelligent and sense what people need and feel in order to improve their performance. Learn from coaches, attend seminars or courses to develop the leadership thinking and abilities necessary to effectively influence, motivate, empower and team-build your people.

Leadership Style
Know your style and approach in providing direction, implementing plans, and motivating people. Whatever your effective leadership style is, be flexible and use all the various leadership styles to allow yourself adapt to each and every situation. An effective leader will be an authoritarian leader when an authoritarian approach is required. Where great vision is needed, he will not hesitate to be a transformational leader.

People Focused
Know and support your staff. Familiarise yourself with the talents and abilities of those in your team know what they are good at. Create an environment which takes into consideration staff's growth and needs. As a leader, you need to be available to your staff as and when required. A good leader encourages when encouragement is needed and always listen to what his followers have to say. A good leader encourages open thinking, trusts and communicates with his people as well as inspire the team to do more than they thought they could.


Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.

Peter F. Drucker

Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.

Dwight Eisenhower

A leader is a dealer in hope.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Leadership is one of the most difficult and challenging form of work.

It includes the work of guiding change, working with individual or group resistance, mobilising teams while building competence and self-confidence in others.

While I personally have found leadership to be occasionally challenging, I have to admit that I am a better person having been a leader in the various situations I am in in life. I sincerely hope the material offered above offers encouragement and insight into leadership in your chosen field.

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    • s_joyjeet profile image

      s_joyjeet 6 years ago from New delhi

      The point "Social Maturity" was very influential.

    • May PL profile image

      May PL 7 years ago from Melbourne, Australia

      Hey RTalloni, thanks for your comments. Glad you liked it. :)

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 7 years ago from the short journey

      Good stuff here!