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What is leadership?

Leadership, as a skill, can be defined in a variety of ways. Some believe it is synonymous with management, whereas others think that these two terms do not have to be linked. What is regularly agreed upon, however, is that leadership, and effective leadership as a quality, is the ability to be effectual in charge or command, maximising the efforts of others, in order to drive success.

It is vital that businesses have employees with good leadership skills, whether they are brought in because of these skills, or they are trained to acquire them.

Why are leadership skills important?

Leadership skills, and leaders, are extremely important to an organization as they can provide an effective tie between business objectives and employees, exploiting all business elements. Leaders can formulate strategy and objectives whilst communicating with, and motivating, employees to follow and achieve the same objectives.

What are the main benefits of effective leadership?

  • Providing Guidance: Leaders can help direct and advise employees, allowing people to execute their jobs more efficiently.

  • Motivating Employees: Good leaders are able to instil a sense of urgency but also passion within their employees. This will help to increase productivity and thus company performance.

    • Initiating Action: Leaders that perform well also initiate action. They can plan out which tasks are necessary, and who is well equipped to perform them. The correct delegation of responsibility can be crucial in, not just job performance, but also job satisfaction, hence being beneficial to the atmosphere of a business.

What are some leadership skills?

There are an array of skills that are needed in order to become successful in leadership, some of which include:

  • Communication: As perhaps the most cited skill required to be an effective leader, communication is crucial. This allows someone to clearly and effectively explain a range of things, including being able to clarify tasks and objectives for a team.

  • Emotional Intelligence: This quality can help to make people feel valued and motivate their work further in order to achieve necessary organizational goals. It is also important for dealing with challenging or sensitive situations, for example one's annual performance review or conflict within the workplace.

    • Creativity: Another skill that is important for leaders to possess is creativity. Leaders will be confronted with many questions and situations that need creative answers. Being able to consistently respond to such problems is a huge benefit to a business.
  • Responsibility: As head of a team or group, a successful leader needs to be able to take responsibility for the failures of the team. They need to be able to admit mistakes and be open to feedback and reflection. In turn, this builds respect among peers and employees, helping future relations.

If you wish to find out more about leadership and its importance, please refer to the following links:

More information on what it takes to be a leader

The importance of leadership in business

What is leadership?

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