10 Keys to Successful Leadership

Leadership is a skill, and it can be learned. You can develop the qualities of a successful leader. In fact, the best leaders never stop growing. If you’re looking to improve your own leadership skills, you may want to focus on one or more of the following key areas.

  • Vision: For us to be leading, someone must follow. To follow, they want to know where they are going first. Are you clear about your vision? Are others clear about it? Are they inspired by your vision and motivated to help you realize it?
  • Awareness: The only moment in which we can take action is the present moment. Awareness of what’s happening right now is critical to successful leadership — from self-awareness to the awareness of others, your team, your organization, and your environment. How aware are you in the present moment?
  • Integrity: People want to follow someone they can count on and believe in. They want to see that what you say lines up with what you do. Integrity leads to trust, respect, and credibility. Are you in alignment? Are you true to yourself and your team?
  • Leading Yourself First: If you know how to lead yourself, you’ll know what it will take to inspire, motivate, and encourage others. Leadership development is really self-development. Are you willing grow and develop? Are you willing to cultivate the confidence and discipline to lead yourself?
  • Influence: Ultimately, leadership is influence. We all influence each other, every day, one way or another. What kind of influencer are you? Are you influencing others in the direction of your vision?
  • Attitude: Attitudes are contagious. If you’re negative, you’ll bring others down. If you’re positive, you’ll lift their spirits. Whatever situation comes your way, you have a choice about how you will respond. Do you take full responsibility for your attitude?
  • Evolving: Leaders create positive change. You don’t always have to be the creator or innovator, but it’s important to recognize and support good ideas. It doesn’t matter whether you came up with them or not. Are you challenging the status quo? Are you willing to experiment? Do you recognize and support others’ good ideas?
  • Learning: Some leaders make the mistake of thinking they need to have all the answers. Successful leaders never stop learning — especially from their mistakes. Learning requires keeping an open mind, listening, and exploring. What are you learning right now? What do you want to learn next?
  • Connecting: Authenticity and emotional intelligence are critical elements of leadership. When you encourage others and show you care about them, you draw them forward even when they face challenges and obstacles. Do you communicate with others from your heart? Do you foster community within your team? Do you recognize and celebrate accomplishments and milestones?
  • Empower Others: We become more powerful when we empower others. Great leaders unleash the leader within each person — liberate them to use their own power. We all want to know that we make a difference. How are you empowering and serving others? What are you doing to help your team grow and develop? What can you do to help them be their best?