3 Perspectives on Good Leadership and a Good Leader

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I do not know about you, but it surprises me how leaders often take good leadership for granted. Becoming a good leader is not a product of technical skill; good leadership proceeds from the heart. Good leadership is about a leader’s character and emotions! The sad reality, though, is that your perspective on leadership leaves footprints behind. A good leader is remembered for his good leadership, and the reverse also for a bad leader. But a few seemingly insignificant capabilities distinguish good leadership from the bad. So insignificant, in fact, the so-called “Charismatic Leaders” miss them.

Let me explain…

You are not a good leader if … 

Your people do not understand where you are going

A good leader is a visionary. Notwithstanding, everyone needs not to be an Aliko Dangote, Jeff Bezos, or Elon Musk to have a clear vision. If you can define the direction you are taking your people or department to, with clarity; you have a vision. The problem is, you will be alone ranger if your people feel they do not understand that direction.

I cannot emphasize enough, the fact that effective communication is not about dominating conversations with endless speeches, or proving ones’ oratory power. Instead, it is asking simple questions and listening with the intention to understand the other party. It is respecting the other person’s points of view even if you are not disagreeing with them. Also, it is empathizing with them in ways that show that you truly care about what they say. 

It is okay to communicate and impress at strategic levels, but how often you empower, inspire, and provide feedback to improve your team’s performance at the operational level makes a huge difference to productivity.

In my coaching with successful entrepreneurs and CEOs, I found that many leaders do not do well enough in sharing their visions with their followers. They communicate at “strategic levels,” but leave the elemental aspect of helping subordinates to understand why they do what they do to chance. It is okay to communicate and impress at strategic levels, but how often you empower, inspire, and provide feedback to improve your team’s performance at the operational level makes a huge difference to productivity. I am speaking about communication that impacts; one that drives a common purpose, and respects team members as humans, and not as willing horses.

Your integrity is in question

As with many good leadership principles, integrity has become a buzzword. Yet, integrity is at the core of every successful long-term business or personal relationships. A good leader must demonstrate that he or she is honest and can be trusted. Honesty is one thing great customers, suppliers, and employees seek to stick around your business for a long time. A good leader not only “walks his talk,” but he or she “talk their walk” also. Take a look at organizations experiencing severe leadership breakdown, it is often that their leadership behaviour demonstrates a lack of integrity in their dealings.

Take a look at organizations experiencing severe leadership breakdown, it is often that their leadership behaviour demonstrates a lack of integrity in their dealings.

Leading with integrity is crucial. It is making promises and following through to deliver on them. It is demonstrating “Candor, also;” seeing the world as it is, and not being afraid of saying iso

You are not contributing to your peoples’ growth

Growth is a fundamental desire that drives human endeavours. People set goals (consciously or unconsciously) because they desire to grow. They want to get better in life – business, career, or marriage. Until you feel that you are growing in the things you do, you cannot have a sense of fulfillment. That is where good leadership comes into play. A good leader makes a positive impact on the growth of the people he or she lead.

If you tell your team what they do every day, you are obviously not contributing to the teams’ growth.

As a good leader, what you do every day counts. In the real world, good leadership is measured, not only on physical results but by the quality of people leaders develop. If you tell your team what they do every day, you are obviously not contributing to the teams’ growth. Also, if decision-making only centers around you, it is a sign that good leadership is far away from you. Why not? Telling people what to do every day stifles their creativity and capacity to innovate; as a result, it retards growth in them. But you can inspire growth in people if you coach, delegate important tasks to key members of your team, and provide constructive feedback to them.

Coaching accelerates people’s capacity to think outside the box, solve problems faster, and produce bigger and better results. Coaching is an antidote for boosting confidence, and self-worth, also. When you appreciate people for solving problems, (no matter how little), they feel a sense of growth and their self-esteem increases. That is what a good leader does.

In conclusion…

The essence of good leadership is not only in the change and results that leaders create. Instead, the positive impacts a good leader makes on how his or her followers think or behave is crucial. A good leader does not make a sustainable change in isolation. The ability to demonstrate clarity of purpose and honesty, and the commitment to care for the people he or she leads, define the essence of good leadership.

I will appreciate it if you can also share your thoughts on good leadership in the comment box below.



Author: Nkem Mpamah
Nkem Mpamah is Nigeria's #1 business coach, leadership and strategy consultant for the services industry. Nkem coaches successful entrepreneurs to improve performance, increase competitiveness, and expand the freedoms of entrepreneurship. He is the founder of Cognition Global Concepts, and creator of the The Strategic Growth Program." He is author of "The ART of Achievement and Fulfillment", and "The Entrepreneur".

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