Andrew Bryant of Self Leadership International looks at what it takes for people to develop their own leadership style and work towards being a successful leader.
Date: Dec 2011
Typically when people get into a leadership position, this comes with various targets they want to achieve, which in turn leads to them to look to take on the role of a driver initially.
When doing this, Bryant said that if people are driving and not getting the results they expect or want, or they are noticing some resentment or delays from staff, then they need to think about their flexibility.
In response, this requires dialogue and openness in terms of whether there are better ways to achieve the targets.
One of the fastest ways of accelerating through the leadership journey, he said, is to get a mentor. This helps individuals to overcome their own egos and realise the value of collaborating with others.
Being a leader
As a leader, an individual is taking themself and others into new territories, said Bryant, adding that if people already know their own way, they don’t need a leader.
Managing people involves telling them what to do and how to do it, but leading people involves explaining to them why they should do it, he explained, and involves helping them get out of their comfort zone.
Are leaders born or made?
According to Bryant, watching how children behave in the playground can highlight characteristics which indicate that people are “born to lead”.
However, he added, there is little correlation between that and those people who become business leaders.
He added that leadership is about learning, with individuals developing over time, making mistakes, learning from those mistakes and then getting better.
The best thing to show the quality of a leader, said Bryant, is the loyalty that people have to their leader and the fact that staff will follow a leader. This includes when times are tough.