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    “A leader is the one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.” — John C. Maxwell
     

5 Ways to Inspire Excellence in Your Team

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A leader is the one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.” — John C. Maxwell

There is so much written out there about leadership it can sometimes be overwhelming. Endless exhortations about what good looks like, charismatic heroes being lauded and a new term being sold as the next big thing weekly. So sometimes it helps to remind ourselves of the basics as we head into work with a thousand opportunities and issues swimming around in our heads. So what IS it as a leader of people I am here to do?

As a leader it is your responsibility to motivate your people to excellence. Your purpose as a leader is not just to get things done but to ensure that everyone knows how their contributions count towards their and their organisation’s success.

In this article I provide 5 tips for inspiring excellence in your team:

1. Build meaningful relationships

If you invest time getting to know people you gain key insights that will help you to determine how best to make use of the varying skills and talents of each individual. You’ll learn about the challenges they are facing, their ideas, observations and suggestions. Stronger relationships help leaders to manage communications more effectively and demonstrate that they genuinely care about developing team strengths and acknowledging contributions.

2. Avoid micromanaging

Set clear expectations and let people get on with it. Nothing screams lack of trust more than a micromanager. In the absence of trust, engagement and productivity levels crash. Ask yourself why you are piling in all the time. Is it you being a control freak or is it confidence in them? Either way it is demoralising and unproductive.

3. Be objective and fair

Ensure that you are not negatively biased in your assessment of people, noting the latency and recency effect. Take the time to assess your own performance before assessing the performance of others, compare the two and ask yourself whether you are being as fair as possible. Or placing blame where it is not due? Ineffective, insecure leaders tend to externalise blame when they should be holding themselves accountable. People only thrive in an environment that values equity and fairness.

4. Be a mentor and coach

Leaders who mentor and coach their team prioritise development. This is what separates a good leader from any old boss because great leaders really care about mentoring, advising and helping people be their best selves. They offer advice and wisdom to help others overcome challenges.

5. Lead by example

You can’t hold others accountable for their behaviour if you are not accountable for your own. Leading by example is an oldie but a goody. As a leader you are walking around with a loud hailer and spotlight on you constantly, that is the most powerful learning your teams are doing. Watching you. Check in with yourself regularly – if my teams all behaved as I did today would I be proud of that? Would it drive excellence and organisational success?So you don’t need a fancy new model of leadership to make a difference today.

  • Put time and energy into relationships
  • Let people get on with it and shine
  • Be fair
  • Be a coach and
  • Put the mirror up so you’re working on your own excellence every day

Enquire here for my upcoming ‘Seat at the Table’ events on a range of topics including ‘Presence and Impact‘, ‘Being a Powerful Negotiator‘, ‘Building our Confidence to be our best leadership self’, and ‘Reputation Building and Visibility‘ taking place from January – April 2019.

Please feel free to contact me at penny@pennydevalk.com.

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