I wrote an article elsewhere about the the 4 keys to becoming the best leader you can be. It’s too long to fit in this blog, but you might be interested in a high-level summary. The 4 keys are:
- Have a clear practical definition of leadership (as many of us have a fuzzy, unhelpful view of it that can cause us to feel inadequate).
- Know the purpose of a leader (because “leader” and “leadership” aren't the same thing and conflating them can make our job harder).
- Know what leaders have to do behaviourally to make leadership happen (it includes envisioning, task AND relationship behaviours, but many leaders don't realize this and overlook crucial parts of their role).
- Know how to grow yourself as a leader from the inside out… and start growing yourself (this is the psychological or self-mastery dimension of leadership, which is only now beginning to be explored).
The first three keys are intellectual, but you might be surprised how many problems they cause if a person hasn’t grasped them. I see this all the time in my work as an executive coach (I'm only a spare time author) and I wish I’d known them when I was a CEO.
The fourth key is the big one and it has three facets:
- The first is expanding your technical knowhow and skills.
- The second is cultivating the right attitude toward others – the attitude that they are as important as you (which leads to the view that your role is to serve those you lead, which is the key to servant leadership).
- The third is self-mastery. This is the all-important psychological part – taking control of your mind and its contents through practices like mindfulness meditation and self-enquiry.
That’s a quick summary. If you’d like to read more, here’s a link to the full article: Leadership: How To Be A Good Leader.