Tag: Leadership

The Importance of Problem Solving for Team Leaders

The Importance of Problem Solving for Team Leaders

Every problem you encounter as a team leader will show you how you think and what you are made of. Your ability to solve problems effectively comes from experience facing and overcoming obstacles. Each time you solve a problem you get a little better at the process. A team leader will never get good at problem-solving unless they keep on trying even when they fail. Team leaders will always face problems no matter in which field they are. The effective team leader is the leader that rises to the occasion to solve the problem.

Related: Problem Solving Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Qualities of Team Leaders with Problem Solving Abilities

They Anticipate Problems
Effective team leaders anticipate problems, knowing that problems are inevitable. If you expect the road ahead to always be smooth, you will not be able to solve the problems that come your way. Although it is important always to keep a positive attitude, planning for the worst will place you in a position to solve the problems that you encounter.

They Accept the Truth
There are different ways that people respond to problems. Some refuse to accept the problem, others accept the problem and just put up with it. Effective leaders are those that accept the problem and try to make things better. Team leaders cannot lead their team through troubled waters if they have their heads in the sand. To be an effective leader you have to face up to the reality of a situation.

They See the Big Picture
It is essential that team leaders must always keep the big picture in mind. As a team leader, you cannot afford to be overwhelmed by emotion nor get so bogged down by details that you lose sight of what is important.

They Handle One Thing at a Time
Tackle your problems, one problem at a time. Do not get overwhelmed by the sheer volume of your problems and then try and dabble at problem-solving. If you are facing a lot of problems, fully solve the one you are working on before moving to the next.

They Do Not Give Up a Major Goal When They are Down
Effective leaders make major decisions during a positive swing in their leadership and not during dark times. Never give up while you are going through the valley.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

How Team Leaders Can Improve Their Problem-Solving Skills

Look for Problems to Solve
If you are someone that usually avoids problems, start looking for problems to solve. You can only get better at problem-solving when you gain experiencing at dealing with problems. Find situations that need fixing and come up with several viable solutions. Take your problem to more experienced problem solvers. Learn from their decisions how they think when handling difficult situations.

Develop a Problem Solving Method
Some team leaders may struggle with solving problems only because they do not know how to tackle them. The following is a problem-solving process you can follow:

  • Establish the real problem
  • Find out what others have done
  • Have your team study all the angles
  • Brainstorm multiple possible solutions
  • Implement the best solution

Surround Yourself with Problem Solvers
If you are not a good problem solver, bring others who are into your team. They will immediately compliment your weakness, and you will learn from them.

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

 

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The Importance of Passion for Team Leaders

The Importance of Passion for Team Leaders

Is passion a characteristic of your life? Passion is an essential quality that you need to be a successful leader of people. It is not possible to effectively lead in an area about which you are not passionate. As a team leader, you cannot start a fire in your team if that fire is not already burning inside of you. Passion is what makes the difference between ordinary leaders and great leaders. To be successful in something you need to love what you are doing. Passion is what makes it possible for seemingly ordinary people to accomplish great things. Nothing can take the place of passion in the life of a team leader.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Passion is The First Step to Achievement

Your desire will determine destiny. All great leaders in history were known for their passion in the areas in which they achieved much. To live a life beyond the ordinary, you need great desire.

Passion Increases Your Will Power

There is absolutely no substitute for passion. Passion is the fuel for the will. If you want something bad enough you will find the willpower to achieve it. The only way to have that kind of desire is to develop passion.

Passion Changes You

If you want to become more dedicated and productive as a team leader, you have to follow your passion and not other people’s perceptions of you. Passion increases your ability to impact others. In the end your passion will have more influence than your personality.

Passion Makes the Impossible Possible

Impossibilities vanish when something fires the soul. That is why passionate team leaders are such effective leaders. Leaders with great passion and few skills will always do better than leaders with many skills but no passion.

How Team Leaders Can Increase Their Passion

Evaluate Your Level of Passion How passionate are you about your leadership? Get an honest assessment from others about your level of passion for what you are doing. You will only truly be able to become passionate when you believe passion can be the difference maker in your life.

Rediscover Your Passion Try and remember what you were passionate about when you started working or when you were a child. What were those things you could spend hours doing? Try and recapture your old enthusiasm and evaluate your life and career in light of those old loves.

Associate with People of Passion Passion is contagious. Get infected with passion by surrounding yourself with passionate people.

 

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Focus for Team Leaders

The Importance of Focus for Team Leaders

Priorities and concentration are the keys to focus. When team leaders have the right priorities but no concentration, they will know what to do but it will never get done. On the opposite side of the scale, if leaders have concentration but no priorities they will have excellence without progress. Only leaders that harness both have the potential to do great things. When it comes to focus, team leaders must remember not to major in the minor things.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Guidelines on How Team Leaders Can Focus Their Time and Energy

Focus 70 Percent of Your Time on Your Strengths
Successful team leaders spend more time focusing on what they do well then on what they do not do well. Strength is always specific. For team leaders to reach their potential, they have to focus on developing their strengths. Most of their time, energy and resources should go in the area of their strengths.

Focus 25 Percent of Your Time on New Things
Growth requires change. For team leaders to grow they have to keep changing and improving themselves. They have to step out into new areas and dedicate time to new things related to their areas of strength.

Focus 5 Percent of Your Time on Your Areas of Weakness
Team leaders cannot entirely avoid working in their areas of weakness. The key is to minimize the time spend working in those areas by delegating as many of these tasks as possible.

How Team Leaders Can Improve Their Focus

Shift to Strengths
Make a list of three to four activities in your job that you do well. Work out more or less what percentage of time you spend on those activities and the percentage of resources dedicated to these areas of strength. Make the necessary changes so that you spend 70 percent of your time on your strong areas.

Related: Time Management Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Staff Your Weakness
Identify three to four activities of your job that you do not do well. Determine how you can delegate the activities to others. You may need to hire staff or partner with a co-worker to share the responsibilities.

Create an Edge
Determine what it would take to go to the next level in the main area of your strength. What are the new tools that you need? Rethink the way you do things and be willing to make sacrifices. Resources that you spend to take you to the next level is the best investment you can make.

 

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Discernment for Team Leaders

 The Importance of Discernment for Team Leaders

Are you a discerning leader? When faced with complex issues, can you readily identify the heart of a matter? Discernment is the ability to find the root of a matter through intuition and rational thought. Discernment is an indispensable quality for team leaders that want to maximize their effectiveness.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Discernment Uncovers Root Issues

The larger the team you lead, the more complex the issues you will encounter. There are times that you will not have enough time to gather enough information to get the complete picture. To make the right decisions, you will often have to rely on your discernment. The discernment of team leaders allows them to see a partial picture, fill in the missing pieces intuitively, and find the real heart of the matter.

Discernment Enhance Problem Solving

If you can get to the root issue of a problem, it is easier to solve the problem. The closer a leader operates in the area of their gifting the stronger their intuition and the ability to see the root causes. The more you work in your area of strength the more you will be able to tap into your discernment potential.

Related: Problem Solving Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Discernment Will Help You Evaluate Your Options for Maximum Impact

Intuition is an important part of discernment, but it is not all there is to discernment. Discernment relies on both intuition and intellect to find the best option for your team.

Discernment Multiplies Your Opportunities

Discernment places leaders in the right place at the right time through their willingness to use their experience and follow their instincts. Team leaders can create their own “luck” through their use of discernment.

How You Can Improve Your Discernment

  1. Analyze your past successes. Take a look at the problems that you successfully solved in the past. What were the root issues? What enabled you to succeed in solving them? If you can capture the heart of the matter in a few words, it will help you to learn to do it with future issues.
  2. Learn how others think. Look at leaders that you admire. Read the biographies of leaders in a similar profession or gifting to yours. Learning how other discerning leaders think can help you become a more discerning leader.
  3. Follow your intuition. Recall the times when your intuition was correct, what do those experiences have in common. Look for patterns that may give you insight into your intuitive ability.

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Courage for Team Leaders

Courage-in-leadership

When a team leader is willing to make courageous decisions, significant progress is made by the team. Leadership positions cannot give a person courage, but courage can give a person a leadership position. One of the things that all effective leaders have in common is the willingness to take risks.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Courage Comes From Within the Team Leader

Every test you face as a leader begins within you. Courage is not the absence of fear but doing that which you are afraid of doing. It is the ability to let go of the familiar and step into the unknown.

Courageous Team Leaders are Peace Makers not Just Peace Keepers

It takes more courage to make things right than it does just to smooth things over. A team leader’s worth is measured in times of challenge and controversy. Effective team leaders not only possess people skills in getting the team to work together, but they can also take a stand when necessary. They have the ability to know when to stand up for something and the conviction to do it.

Courageous Team Leaders Inspire Commitment from Their Team

Courage is contagious; a show of courage by one team member encourages the rest of the team. A show of courage by the team leader inspires the team and makes them want to follow the team leader. When leadership expresses courage, it compels the team to do the right thing.

Your Leadership Expands in Proportion to Your Courage

While fear limits leaders, courage opens doors and provides better futures. Whether you take risks or not, you are going to experience some amount of fear. Since you are going to have to overcome your fear and doubts, you might as well make it count.

How You Can Improve Your Courage

  1. Stretch yourself. Do something that stretches you, simply for the sake of growing in courage. What you choose to do is not important, as long as it causes you to face a genuine fear.
  1. Stop avoiding confrontation. Is there someone with whom you know you are avoiding confrontation? Talk with that person this week in a kind and gentle manner.
  1. Take that big step. Is there something big you know you should do, but you have not had the courage to do? Face up to it this week, talk to your spouse or trusted friend about If you feel it’s the right thing to do, then do it.

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Competence for Team Leaders

Competence Leadership

We all admire people who are highly competent in what they are doing, whether they are a precision craftsman, world class athletes or successful businessmen. To be recognized by your team as a leader, you need a high degree of competence. The better you are at what you do, the greater potential you will have for influence with your team.

Competent team leaders are those that:

  • Can see what needs to happen.
  • Can make it happen.
  • Can make it happen when it really counts.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Competent Team Leaders Show Up Everyday

Responsible leaders are those that show up when expected. Highly competent team leaders show up ready for work every day no matter how they feel. They are not distracted by the circumstances they face or how difficult they expect the day to be.

Competent Team Leaders Keep Improving

Highly competent team leaders are continuously looking for ways to keep learning, growing and improving. They are always looking to find out the why of something. The person who knows how will always have a job but the person who knows why will always be the boss.

Competent Team Leaders Follow Through With Excellence

Competent team leaders are those leaders who always follow through with excellence. Leading with excellence is a choice and an act of the will. As much as the leader expects the team to follow through on tasks, even more so the team expects the leader to follow through with excellence.

Competent Team Leaders Accomplish More Than Expected

Highly competent team leaders are always looking to go the extra mile. Team leaders must always be on the guard against an attitude of “let’s just get through it the best we can”. Competent team leaders do more than what is expected from them on a daily basis.

Competent Team Leaders Inspire Others

Competent team leaders not only perform at a high level, but they also inspire and motivate their team to do the same. Effective leaders combine relational skills with high competence to take their team to a new level of excellence and influence.

How You Can Improve Your Level of Competence

  • Get your head in the game. If you notice that you have been mentally or emotionally detached from your work, it is time to re-engage and rededicate yourself to your job. Determine to give your job an appropriate amount of time and undivided attention. The next step is to figure out why you have become detached in the first place. Identify the source of the problem and create a plan to resolve it.
  • Redefine the standard. Reexamine your standards if you are not performing at constantly high standards. Make sure that you have not been shooting too low or cutting corners. If this is the case, it is time to outline more demanding expectations for yourself.
  • Find three ways to improve. To improve you have to be intentional about it. Find three things you can do to improve your professional skills. Dedicate time and money to follow through on them.

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Commitment for Team Leaders

The Importance of Commitment for Team Leaders

You cannot be an effective team leader without commitment. There has never been a great leader that was not committed. Commitment is a leadership quality that inspires and attracts people. It shows that the leader has convictions and that the leader believes in the cause. A team will buy into the team leader before they buy into the vision.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

The True Nature of Commitment

  1. Commitment is a heart issue. Team leaders cannot wait for everything to be perfect before they are willing to commit themselves. Commitment is needed before success can be experienced. It is often a person’s heart that makes the difference between a good and a great leader. If you really want to make a difference in the life of others you need to look into your heart to see if you are really committed.
  2. Commitment is tested by action. The real test of a team leader’s commitment is action and not mere talk. Words are easy to say but it is much harder to live them out each day. How are you at following through on your commitments?
  3. Commitment opens the door to achievement. Leaders will often face obstacles and opposition. There will be times where their commitment is the only thing that carries them through. Commitment allows team leaders to press on and get up no matter how many times they get knocked down. Nothing worthwhile can be achieved without commitment.

Related: Resilience Outcome Based Team Building Activities

How to Improve Your Commitment

  1. Measure your commitment. There are times when team leaders think they are committed but their actions show otherwise. Take time to look at where you spend your time and how you spend your money. This will give you a clear indication of your true level of commitment.
  2. Know what is worth dying for. What are you willing to die for? What would you not be able to stop doing no matter the consequences? See if your actions match your ideals.
  3. Make your plans public. If you find it difficult to make that first step towards commitment, make your plans public. Making your plans public will help you to be more committed to following them through.

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Charisma for Team Leaders

 

Charismatic-Team-Leaders

Charisma is a characteristic that draws people to you. Although it is often believed that you are either born with charisma or not, it is in fact a characteristic that can be developed. As a team leader, how charismatic would you rate yourself? Are people naturally attracted to you? Most common roadblocks to charisma are pride, insecurity, moodiness, perfectionism, and cynicism.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Traits of Charismatic Team Leaders

  1. Charismatic team leaders love life. People typically enjoy and more readily follow leaders who enjoy life. Leaders with charisma are passionate about life; they are celebrators and not complainers. If you want to be someone that attracts people, become like those people that you enjoy being around.
  2. Charismatic team leaders expect the best of their team. The charismatic team leader has made it a habit of always expecting the best of their team. If you are always expecting the best of people and help them to think more highly of themselves, you will naturally attract people. Charismatic leaders appreciate others and encourage others.
  3. Charismatic team leaders give their team hope. Charismatic team leaders are always looking to instill hope because they know hope is the greatest of all possessions. People will be attracted to you if you are a leader that bestows hope on others.
  4. Charismatic team leaders share of themselves. People are naturally attracted to leaders that share of themselves and their life journeys. Charismatic leaders are willing to share their resources, wisdom and special Leaders with charisma think about others more than they think of themselves.

How to Become a More Charismatic Team Leader

  1. Work at focusing more on others. Observe how you interact with others, how much of your talking is concentrated on yourself. If you find that most of the conversation is about you, then it is time to change the balance and focus more on others.
  2. Make sure you are creating positive first impressions. When next you meet someone for the first time, make a determined effort to make a good first impression. Make sure you memorize the person’s name, focus on the person’s interest and that you are positive.
  3. Practice sharing of yourself and your resources. Make it one of your long term goals to share your resources with others. Think how you can add value to the lives of those people you interact with on a daily basis. Provide them with resources to help them grow both personally and professionally.

 

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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The Importance of Character for Team Leaders

The Importance of Character for Team Leaders

As a leader at home, at work or in the community, character is your most important asset. Character determines how a team leader deals with the circumstance of life. Whenever a team leader encounter’s a crisis, the character of the leader is revealed. There are two primary responses when adversity hits; the leader can either respond through character or compromise. Every time character is chosen the leader becomes stronger, even when the choice has negative consequences. Developing your character is at the heart of developing not only as a leader but also as a person.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Character is Action not Just Talk

A team leader’s actions are the real indication of character. Character determines who you are, and who you are determines what you see and what you see determines what you do. The character of a leader cannot be separated from the leader’s actions. When the leader’s intentions are not consistently lining up with their actions, you only need to look at the character of the leader to find out why.

Character is a Choice

There are many things that we cannot control in our lives such as where we are born and what talents we receive. But character is something we can choose. Character is created every time we make the choice to see something through, choose the truth over the lie, refuse the easy money and pay the price. You are creating your character every day as you live life and make choices.

Character Brings Lasting Success with People

True leadership always involves other people. You cannot be a team leader if you do not have a team that is following you. Followers do not trust leaders with flawed characters and will not continue to follow team leaders that they do not trust.

Related: Trust Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Team Leaders Cannot Rise Above the Limitations of Their Character

Highly talented people often fall apart when they reach a measure of success due to their weak character. Team leaders need the foundation of character to get them through stressors related to achievement. The price to pay for weak character includes arrogance, feelings of aloneness, destructive adventure-seeking or adultery.

How Team Leaders Can Improve Their Character

  1. Search for the cracks. As a leader, you should take time to look at the major areas of your life. Identify where you may have cut corners, compromise or let people down. Write all the instances that you can recall from the last two months.
  2. Look for patterns. Examine all the instances you wrote down. Identify areas of weakness or problems that keep surfacing. Detecting patterns will help diagnose any character issues that need addressing.
  3. Face the music. Character building and repairing can begin when you face your flaws, make apologies where necessary and deal with the consequences of your actions. You may need to make a list of people to whom you need to apologize. Ensure that you follow through with sincere apologies.
  4. Not only must you face up to past actions but you have to build a new future. Create a plan that will prevent you making same mistakes.

 

Resource: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader

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Leadership: Modeling the Way for Your Team

Leadership: Modeling the Way for Your Team

The best team leaders are those that are examples of what they want their team to be. An effective leader does not lead from the back. A team leader that sends the team out to face the challenges while remaining in an ivory tower will never gain the respect of the team. By definition, a leader is someone who takes the lead and is ready to take the heat if something goes wrong. A real leader does not blame the team members even if in fact they failed. The real leader takes the blame and addresses how to correct the problem.

Related: Leadership Outcome Based Team Building Activities

Be an Inspirational Role Model

Leadership requires self-confidence and is neither for the timid nor the arrogant. People who lack self-confidence often feel intimidated by a real leader. Do not let a lack of self-confidence hold you back. If you have honesty, integrity and deal with everyone fairly, others will recognize it. A leader should be open to criticism but should consider the source as well. You should not be afraid of what other may say; neither should you ignore legitimate complaints. If you insist on respect solely based on your position, you will easily lose the respect and cooperation of your team.

Influencing the Perspectives of Your Team Members

It is often said that perception is reality. As a leader, it is important that you are always presenting an honest, caring, dedicated attitude to inspire others. If you aim to inspire loyalty in your team members, it is essential that you have a track record of honesty and fairness. Address the issue immediately if any of your team members feel they have been wronged, whatever the reason may be. A problem that is ignored is a problem that grows.

Often the most-powerful influence a leader can have is in not trying to influence someone. If your team feels that you are open to their suggestions and believe that they have been heard, they will work harder even if they disagree with the methods or goals. You will find that simply listening to others make them feel empowered even if they don’t accept your ideas. If the members of your team feel that there is no point in talking to you, then they simply won’t. This could lead to the team members becoming disengaged from your vision and only following your directions begrudgingly.

If your team members see that you are willing to go the extra mile, they are more likely to go the extra mile as well. A team leader that hides in the office will be perceived as uninterested and uninformed, and therefore unworthy to lead. Many successful leaders of large organizations make it a point to seen by their team members every day. When a team member is to be commended for something, it should be done in front of the rest of the team. This will send a powerful message to all the team members.

 

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