Great leaders are hard to come by. In every age, there is a leader born that shapes the world. What we are today and the wealth of comforts that are at our disposal is owed largely to some leader. He may have been a leader who was tech-drive or could have been a leader who was politically driven who introduced the reforms, say for LGBT community and so on so forth.
Leaders exhibit certain traits, if they didn’t they would be guys like you and me. Just normal people living ordinary lives but have you ever stopped to think that you may be someone with leadership qualities waiting to come out. The following signs will outline whether or not you are destined to be a leader:
- You empower others
It is wrong of people to assume that leadership will only flow through them when they are at a certain position or when they will be enjoying certain privileges? Wrong! Although a leader can have privileges and power that the leader earns, and is not handed to him. Ask anyone.
When you prove yourself that you can lead things like power and other privileges automatically start to flow towards you but that you establish with your traits and one of those is empowering others. You should be willing to be of service to people, to help and guide them in order to enable them to realize their goals. So if you find a natural drive to go out of your way and offer assistance to people, you might just be destined to become a leader.
- You focus on solutions, not problems
I had a manager once, whom I heard saying “come to me with solutions not problems”. I know we all run into problems both in our careers and in our life but problems are opportunities in disguise. It is normal to feel down in the dumps when you don’t know the way forward but problems bring out the best in us. They make us look into the corners which we weren’t looking at first for resolutions.
This very trait tops it all – separates a leader from a person with non-leadership characteristics. They believe that fretting on a problem over and over is a waste of both time and energy. If the same effort is put into working out solutions, imagine what we can accomplish. Does it sound like you?
- You have emotional intelligence
The modern world is full of chaos and too much information much of which is not even needed by us but we are still consuming it. This makes as susceptible to all forms of emotions. We feel sad and then next moment we are angered upon learning about something. We being cordial with our colleagues the next moment we are bad mouthing them for who they are. The tolerance and patience have seemingly disappeared from our lives.
Amidst all this, if you can maintain your sense of calm and not lose your sanity, you sir are one of a kind! In other words an emotionally intelligent being. You know how to act in certain conditions and realize where you will be overreacting and when voicing your concerns is actually going to make a difference.
Organizations these days in their hiring process gauge candidates for emotional intelligence. This has become necessary because the more you are capable of handling situations efficiently no matter how wrong something gets, the higher your productivity which in turn, amounts to revenues for the organization. Emotionally unstable people rarely climb corporate ladders or hold the position of command in life.
- You listen more than you talk
Listening is a skill and not everyone is capable of listening. Most of us what we think we have listened is merely hearing. There is a difference. Listening is the art to hear someone out empathetically. Unless you learn to empathize you cannot understand other person’s viewpoint. Leaders listen to their followers/subordinates and is a vital component of effective communication skills.
- You start with why
Forget about pursuing a passion, according to a recent survey some 70% of the Americans heart is not in the game and by game I mean jobs. In other words, they are not connected/involved in their jobs. Not enjoying work is the biggest curse anyone has to live with. What do you think is the missing ingredient for such lack of interest?
It is that they don’t ask “why”. When you know why are you doing this job and what outcome it yields, you can only then be able to align yourself better with your work. When you are not aware what happens to the work that you do, is it being evaluated or is it in any way shaping the company’s future? You feel pissed and undervalued.
A person with leadership quality, on the other hand, dares to ask the big “WHY” before commencing work. The ‘why’ will reveal if the work you are signing up for is inspiring? If it fails to inspire, a leader will know what to do.
- You use logic
Someone once humorously put if brain was an app, everyone would be using it. So you see, there is a dearth of people not using their brains for decision making. Following your heart or gut sometimes is okay but not using logic or thinking rationally should be made punishable under the court of law.
It is a sin! I say this because if a person wants to lead and offer sensible advice and in turn, lays down a roadmap, in life or career there will always be few people who would suggest otherwise without even comprehending its lasting impact just for the sake of either having an opposite point of view or merely for having an urge to give two cents in the matter.
Unless you have something meaningful to share, add or ask it is rather best to stay mum. Point being leaders don’t overly rely on intuition but they attach more weight to well-thought-out strategies in achieving success. If you are among the latter, congratulations! You are nearing in becoming a great leader.