What Makes a Great Leader?

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Think of a leader. Someone you admire. Someone you are drawn to like a magnet. What qualities do they have that makes you want to follow their lead?

We often think that leadership is all about control – feeling powerful and telling other people what to do. We think of someone shouting over a crowd or making all of the decisions yet, in reality, it’s an inside job. We must practice self-leadership before we can ever lead anyone else. 

We can’t always do this alone sometimes we need support to do this, read my blog – Why its important to ask for help.

Try reframing leadership in this way: Creating spaces and opportunities for other people to stand up.

Doesn’t it sound much more approachable?

Because the truth is, great leaders haven’t got everything figured out. They learn and they lead from the heart. They let others into their space, even if they aren’t aligned, because it’s a learning opportunity.

Sometimes, as leaders, we have to remind ourselves that we’re not the finished article; we are simply trying to be the best person we can be, and that’s a process. This means mistakes are made but we must learn to love those mistakes. We must have those difficult conversations with ourselves to overcome what is holding us back.

For example, we may hold back from our leadership position for fear of rejection. We may not step up to speak our truth, to tell someone “this is not okay” because we are afraid of the response and what that means for ourselves. However, it is only by holding others accountable that we can have an impact as a leader. We must do more than just notice, we must act.

Try this Exercise

Reflect on your own leadership and the experiences you’ve been challenged with so far. Be honest with yourself, and answer the following questions:

  • What could you do better or do differently?
  • What are you afraid of that you haven’t yet addressed?
  • What can you do to grow and develop?

Becoming a great leader is a process. We can all do it if we put our minds to it. It’s all about moving from where we are now to where we want to be, about shedding things that no longer serve us.

Ultimately, good leadership stems from you knowing yourself well enough to share your purpose and encouraging others to stand up beside you. It doesn’t have to be this intimidating feeling of power, of control, of being loud in a quiet room. It is simply about taking ownership of everything you’ve been through and using your mistakes to push yourself forwards. 

Create those success-habits, set clear boundaries, and change your space in the world for the better. 

For more tips and inspiration join my free Facebook community – The Coaching Collective.

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