To create movement in others, great leaders must possess a deep belief in the capacity of the human spirit. Great leaders find their sole reason for living to be in the coaching and development of other people. Nothing brings a great leader more joy than watching their people succeed. Great leaders are social, involved, energetic, emotional, expressive, and inspiring. They have the natural ability to get people to move, grow and to become the best they can be. They are able to inspire others into working hard, into creating change, to thinking outside the box and to act with integrity. They have the natural capacity to do this because this is who they are, and how they live their own lives.
Great leaders believe in their mission and in their team. Without a deep belief in success, there can be no real leadership. Beliefs are contagious. Whenever you’re around a person who deeply believes in something, they wreak of passion, motivation, and energy. Wherever there is energy for something, there is action, and wherever there is action there is success. People are not inspired to work hard for anything they do not fully believe in. Great leaders hold an unshakable belief in what they do, and it is this belief that inspires the movement in others necessary to reach success.
Because there is such a deep belief in their mission, great leaders thrive on encouraging their team to work hard. Encouragement comes easily when there is clarity in thought, purpose and trajectory. When team members feel the deep belief their leader has in them, this is their greatest motivational force; to live up to the idea of who they are being encouraged to be. Great leaders can always be found standing on the front lines with their teams, showing them the way, encouraging and guiding them all along the journey. Great leaders never sit lazily back and let their team suffer alone. They encourage them to fight, to strive and to win.
The best leaders are dreamers. They live in the constant belief that their best and most successful days are still ahead of them. There is no end to success if they can dream for more. Because they are visionaries, they inspire this same type of thinking in others. They promote the idea there is no dream too big to realize. If someone can come up with an idea, then that idea is achievable in the realm of all possibility. The realm of all possibility is the space where the greatest leaders exist in their own minds. This is why brainstorming is such an essential tool great leaders utilize on a consistent basis to continue to expand their horizons. This helps train the minds of their team members into thinking outside their comfort zones, without fear of embarrassment or recrimination.
Great leaders advocate for each team member to reach for their highest potential. They study each member individually in order to maximize upon their strengths and to gauge where they need growth. Great leaders are team players, they are human, and genuinely interested in each team member as a person. They are there to guide, coach, promote, elevate and understand the needs of each. When a person feels heard, loved and understood they will succeed. Great leaders know this, and their interest and concern is genuine.
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Great leaders have a clear sense of direction. They are wise to the understanding that teams and individuals without direction will have scattered focus, at best. When the direction, strategy and agenda is clear, it allows team members to work together more effectively. It is up to the leader to set the direction, tone and mood of the mission, so each member is clear in their role and the overall intention. Success never results from a free-for-all unorganized place where success is based more in luck, then in planning. Direction creates focus.
Change is something great leaders expect and prepare for. Great leaders are flexible in their direction, as unexpected obstacles will be sure to pop up. Directions may need to shift and change in order to develop better strategies to move forward. Great leaders view change as essential for their overall progress. Change is what creates creativity, growth, and resilience. It puts people in the position to have to be smart, to think on their feet, in tandem with having patience. When leaders remain calm, flexible, innovative and patient in the midst of change, the team members relax and do the same. Great leaders know all the key answers they need for success, come directly from change.
Great leaders view themselves as 100% responsible for their role, their duties and for leading their team. They are not lazy, entitled people pushing their responsibilities off onto the team while they lead from a great distance, then blaming the team when there is a failure. Great leaders make team members feel as if they are the sole and total reason for any success, and because of this, team members are more than willing to be responsible in their roles. Great leaders are in the muck, shoulder-to-shoulder with team members where successes and failures happen to all. No one is singled out; inspiring each to take responsibility.
Truly great leaders naturally love people, are inspired from within, do not believe in quitting, are natural strategists, eager learners and great teachers. They are in the constant education of themselves, and have a vested interest in learning about others and looking into the aptitudes others possess, so as to maximize upon them. Great leaders are committed to building people up. They do not believe in using fear or degradation to ignite motivation because it has no longevity when it comes to success. They promote personal development and the development of the strengths of each individual; guaranteeing success.
The majority of great leaders gained their wisdom through their own suffering. Suffering is an essential ingredient of leadership development. Who would want to follow someone who has never suffered? No one. That would be the blind leading the blind. Suffering develops character, the ability to think on one’s feet, and the ability to strategize quickly in an effort to avoid failure. Most importantly, succeeding and suffering are what create a deep sense of comradery between a leader and their team. Suffering creates cohesion. Bonded teams are the most successful teams.
Great leaders understand whenever a person is made to feel like an expert in their specific role, they will strive to live up to that expectation and reputation. When the team succeeds the leader gives the team the credit. Great leaders do not feel satisfied with any success unless every member benefits from their hard work through their work being rewarded and acknowledged. Each team member is considered an expert and is trusted completely to take control and be successful in their position. This elevates each member to hold a deeply felt pride in their value and to take their role on the team seriously. Great leaders make all team members, in their own right, feel like the leader in their specific role.
Great leaders excite people. They bring team members into cohesive, tight units which turn all missions into a crusades. Morale is contagious from leader to team member, and then from team member to team member. The excitement and support team members receive from their leader inspires them to give nothing less than their best.