The Top Five Laws Of Leadership Everyone Must Obey
Are there laws of leadership you must obey if you aim at becoming a great leader for your teams? What are these laws great leaders obey that really pave the way so people will do their best to make your organization thrive?
What is leadership? Defining leadership is not a simple matter.
A leadership strategy that works in one particular situation may not work again at another time under the same conditions. Instead of providing a simple definition, we present leadership in terms of five laws that offer an integrated portrait of leadership.
Leading is almost always exceptionally challenging.
Rarely do you have positional authority to compel people you work with to do what you want. Learning the principles of leadership will help you be even more successful in leading across your people.
Effective leadership is closely connected to long-term business success.
Understanding the laws of leadership and how to apply them can help you build a successful and sustainable business. Here we’ll examine the top 5 laws of leadership and how they can enable you to boost your business.
Just ask yourself: would you follow you?
WarningIn the end, it is leadership that decides the success or failure of an organization. Weakness in any of the primary leadership laws can result in the failure of the plan, the project, the team, or the organization.
Be sure you CAN grow your leadership skills. Master even one of these laws, and you will grow as a leader.
Times change, technology marches on, knowledge increases, cultures vary from region to region, but the principles of leadership remain. Let’s find out my top five laws of leadership you must obey.
When you think about leadership laws typically what comes to mind are qualities like strength, vision, enthusiasm, charisma and courage. Often you’ll overlook an essential leadership trait — humility.
The fact is, no one is inspired by showboats. Bragging about your accomplishments will result in disconnect with your team.
Instead, leaders with exceptional character earn a lot more respect and admiration. Humble leaders will use their skills, experience and knowledge to attract and inspire followers, bring people together and contribute to their community.
Humble leaders acknowledge, listen to and promote others talent.
This comes from the understanding that fear and coercion will result in burnout and higher employee turnover. Leaders with humility act as a source of encouragement, support and guidance for their team enabling them to tap into their full potential and be more successful.
In researching nearly 1,500 companies and leaders for his best-selling leadership book, Good to Great, author Jim Collins discovered humility to be the X factor of great leadership. Too often startup culture gets caught up in the bravado of “disrupting”, “paradigm-shifting”, or “becoming the next unicorn.” And all to easily founder confidence morphs into founder arrogance.
Humble leaders will share the limelight when successful and lose as a team.
Through their humility leaders understand that by grooming and growing their teams the company’s bigger picture can be achieved through their collective brilliance. Simply put, the more successful your team, the more success your company enjoys and the greater your leadership.
Leaders who present themselves as as humans are more likely looked up to and admired.
And with humility you’ll exhibit the traits that’s common with your entire team — you’re vulnerable to mistakes, are flawed in some ways and are constantly learning. To really connect with you team, show them your true, human side because this way they’ll believe you more when they understand you and can relate to you.
Know Your Stuff
Successful leaders routinely carve out time and space away from everyday business issues to reflect, acquire new knowledge and focus on strategy. This discipline allows them to gain the clarity they need to navigate the day-to-day challenges while keeping their company on course for long-term success.
Trust is built when a leader consistently exemplifies competence, connection and character.
If you pursue growth of your leadership skills by enhancing your skills, you can become a more effective leader and make a positive impact on your business. This seems obvious, but some leaders do try to cut corners rather than mastering the knowledge that they must have and that is essential to the quality of their performance.
You’ll never know everything — that’s just a fact of life.
WarningBut things are always changing; new research comes out, or new technology, and to continue staying on top of the competition, you need to be constantly learning and seeking out new information. Improving your skills and knowledge is never a bad thing.
You need to be worth following in order to lead. What you do and say in both your professional and personal life has a bearing on your credibility. In a world of social media, it is important to remember that your character has no on/off switch. How you behave in every circumstance and what you say in social media and other communication channels speaks volume about your credibility. Be worth following.
Be the model of what you expect from others.
Warning“Do as I say, not as I do” leaders are not respected, and will quickly sink a positive atmosphere in the workplace. If you want your team to be hard-working, honest, passionate — you need to model this for them and live it yourself. Enthusiasm is contagious; spread it to your team and see the great results.
World-class leaders are high on curiosity and low on ego. They are inquisitive, welcome new ideas from trusted sources and are eager to explore.
Vulnerability is viewed as an asset, and they are the first to admit they don’t have all the answers. They ask questions to seek input and pressure-test their assumptions, so they can come to the best decision for the business — not to prove their own point.
Trust Your Gut
Great leaders see what others cannot, “around corners”. They can make changes or take steps with little warning or evidence. The best kind of intuition is informed intuition.
A good leader has good intuition. Good instincts keep a leader out of trouble.
A leader’s intuition can lead him to failure as well as success, so information and experience are priceless in this regard. A leader armed with intuition and information will be a great decision maker, both agile and confident.
A good leader leads with leadership bias. He sees things through the lens of a leader.
He reads the situation, the trends, their resources, their key people, and their own abilities. Intuition is not innate in all leaders; you either naturally see it or you can be nurtured to see it. Otherwise, you’ll never see it.
Intuition is based on much more than facts. It is about being in tune with what is going on in the environment, including people’s attitudes and team dynamics. These intuition includes being ahead of trends to understand future challenges or opportunities on the horizon.
Sometimes a leader may have good information and bad intuition. This will lead him to danger.
Others have good intuition and bad information. This will cause him to under or overestimate a situation. But good intuition and good information will certainly lead to success one decision at a time.
A leader touches a heart before he asks for a hand. Always back up the way you feel with objectivity, and then go with your gut.
WarningYou cannot lead people who don’t connect with you. Once a leader has a trust connection with his followers, they will do almost anything for him. Until that connection is made, followers will balk.
Momentum Is Opium
You can’t steer a ship easily without forward motion. If you want to move people through change, you need to build positive momentum. When you have no momentum it is like trying to push a freight train from a dead stop, but when momentum is at full force, not even your obstacles can stand in your way.
Momentum is the leader’s best friend. Both positive and negative momentum are powerful in an organization.
Small victories can build confidence and teamwork that leads to higher and higher levels of performance. Great leaders do not leave this process to chance.
There is something contagious about success. When we succeed at something, we believe we can continue to succeed.
Early on your journey to do extraordinary things, don’t go for the mountain, conquer the anthill. Quick wins will set the tone and lay a foundation for future accomplishments.
Leaders always find a way for their teams to win. Good leaders are winners; they don’t accept defeat.
They will use everything at their disposal to win. When they do lose, they examine their failures and use the learning to win next time.
When you give those around you the encouragement and tools to succeed, you’re instilling a sense of pride in their work and improving their self-esteem, while pushing them to get the best results possible. Making people feel good will make you feel good too, and will bring a great atmosphere to the workplace. You’ll also improve the culture of the business, which will have positive ripple effects throughout the whole company.
Build on Results. There is a difference between activities and results.
WarningPeople have a tendency to spend a lot of time accomplishing activities that do not necessarily move them any closer to their goals. We must make sure that the time and energy we invest into tasks produces results because every result is cumulative in that it enables us to see a little further and believe a little more.
Begin with belief. Belief is the difference between a naysayer and a world changer.
Those who believe they can, change the world; those who don’t, tell others they can’t. No matter what, never let anyone rob you of your belief because it is the fuel behind every success.
Tailor The Sailor
Great leaders pursue leadership excellence with the commitment of a world-class athlete. They know it’s a challenging, continuous journey that requires hard work and determined attention.
Effective leaders reject shortcuts and take ownership of their development.
They bring rigor and grit, working hard to hone their expertise and committing their whole selves to continual improvement. They push themselves to learn more, grow further and lead better.
Effective leaders set the direction for their people to follow. In addition, they visualize the entire journey before it starts and understand how to get to their destination.
Leaders think differently and perceive opportunities and ways of overcoming obstacles that others do not. Leadership occurs when a person influences others to recognize his or her direction as useful — when they can sell others on their idea.
The failure of many ileaders s because they show no commitment, or commitment to the wrong goals. Commitment comes from a worthy mission and then strong commitment. Non-profit directors tend to have a personal commitment to the organization’s cause. Few people sit on a a school board unless they deeply care about the education.
High-performing leaders follow a disciplined approach to decision-making.
They use a systematic process that takes into account their instincts; judgment based on experience and data; and perspectives from peers, mentors and employees. Applying this rigor helps them make more accurate decisions in less time — consistently.
Be brave. Be kind. Always practice kindness and bravery.
The best leaders are those who blaze trails and are willing to do the things nobody else will. You’ll surprise yourself with what you can accomplish when you take that leap!
It might seem that leaders are born with more or less charisma and some seem more naturally equipped than others. Nevertheless, humility can be learned, trust can be built and mistakes can be avoided.
These leadership laws can be learned. You can become a great leader, but it will take a significant investment in yourself, in your leadership.
If you are able to increase your skills according to these principles, you will increase your leadership and your organization accordingly. Leadership skills will help you accomplish your dream without leaving your potential on the table.
Leadership is hard work. Few people are good leaders without having made mistakes along the way.
WarningWhat separates great leaders from the best ones is the investment in proactive study of leadership. It is important to know what great leadership looks like and to find a personal path that allows you to master the skill set in an authentic way.
Great leaders are forever students of leadership. They realize there is always something new to learn and apply.
Great leaders teach others how to find their own effective leadership style and encourage leadership behavior from their followers.
Be all you can be and take some others with you!
I encourage you to make leadership a life-long study and mastery a personal journey. The impact you can make on the lives of people in your organization by being a great leader can be personally and professionally rewarding.
I go by these guidelines every day, and I hope they help inspire you to take the next step and ramp up your leadership. These laws also apply to life in general — who doesn’t want to be the best they can be, whether they’re a leader or not?
I’d love to hear what you think of my top five laws of leadership! Let me know what you think of them, and if you think I should include any other laws. Let me know in the comment section below.