Five New Year’s Resolutions for Great Leaders
As 2019 winds down, it’s the perfect time to reflect on resolutions for the New Year. As a leader, think about what actions you can take to increase your leadership influence and impact. Here is our short list for essential New Year resolutions for leaders.
Do your people trust you? Would they have no hesitancy coming to you with any challenge, issues or topic without fear of recourse? Probably not. “In fact, just one in three employees in Gallup’s Trust Poll for Leaders global database strongly agree that they trust the leadership of their organization.” What do you think your percentage of trust would be with the group?
Those leaders that are conscious and present, are leaders that have a high level of trust within their organizations. They model trust in a way that positively influences how employees perform and ultimately how committed they are to the goals of the organization.
Share the Vision
What is the vision for the New Year? It might be clear in the upper levels of leadership but does everyone in the organization fully understand what the vision is and how their work specifically contributes to the achievement of company objectives?
The best leaders demonstrate three critical elements to achieve a vision. Clarity provides a roadmap for teams and employees to follow. And it’s important to have clearly defined milestones along the way to provide an opportunity to celebrate success and to evaluate performance. Connectedness keeps the team energized and committed. Trust-building is a cornerstone for creating connection and instilling excitement across the organization. Lastly, Commitment is the outcome of creating a culture of clarity, understanding, and connection. Employees who can look to the horizon and feel a part of the vision have a higher likelihood of doing what it takes to achieve success.
Listen & Seek to Understand
Check in with your workforce. What’s working and what needs attention. Leaders that truly take the time to listen and seek to understand create a meaningful connection. Everyone wants to be heard and to know that what they say is important to the process.
Kick-off the New Year with the intention to create the space to hear from your team and employees. Whether one-on-one or in small group settings, the opportunity to share feedback provides a powerful platform to engage employees and understand what is important to them.
Great leaders hold themselves accountable and own up to their own mistakes. Demonstrating this behavior lets employees know that they too are supported, and their actions can be opportunities to celebrate success or to learn from mistakes.
Holding our peers accountable is an important part of the team process. This takes a high level of trust and when leaders model these powerful behaviors, others are more willing to hold one another accountable.
A team is defined as a group working towards a common purpose. But great teams require more. What is often missing is an understanding of connectedness of the greater whole. Great teams are those where individuals understand how their personal effort fits into the team and how their team fits into the organization.
To achieve this, leaders must promote the human side of business. It’s easy to fall into day-to-day routines checking action items off the list in an almost mechanical way. Many leaders are so caught up in the frenzy of keeping up, that it feels impossible to do things differently. Leaders that take the time to truly get to know their people – where they come from, what’s important to them, what are their aspirations – are leaders who develop respect of the person beyond the task of business accomplishments. It’s not the fastest teams that win – it’s the smartest. Be a smart leader and get to know the personal side of those you lead.