Why do my team members not respect me? Why do I feel incompetent in my place of work?
These and many more were the questions that plagued Dylan’s mind any time he thought of his career in his place of work.
As a team leader, he had to be in charge of his fellow employees under him, made sure they worked efficiently, were productive, and were the best in his department. However, as the months went by, he began to feel like he and his team were at a stalemate. Neither moving forward nor backward. His company’s routine evaluations did nothing to dispel his worries and he and his team began to get concerned. The question is;
What do you suggest Dylan do to improve his team’s performance?
While I’d love to answer the question immediately, let’s fully understand how leadership and its skills relate to personal development. Shall we?
- How to be your own boss without losing your job
- How to speed up your career development and become a boss very fast
Leadership and Personal-development defined
- Personal development.
Is a term used to describe the act of continuously accessing oneself in areas of values, life goals, qualities, and assets to influence the gradual process of self-development, and growth to maximize one’s full potential.
Personal-development is used to continually influence growth in all aspects of an individual’s life – mentally, emotionally, physically, spiritually, and socially.
Personal development cannot be made possible, without any of these areas being influenced. In the process of developing yourself, leadership skills can be learned whether it is inborn, or acquired. You may wonder what leadership skills are.
- Leadership skills.
Leadership skills are those abilities that you have that are necessary as a leader to mobilize and organize people towards a common goal and motive.
It doesn’t stop there.
It also involves encouraging, motivating, correcting, and protecting the people under you either to get the best results or to boost their morale.
For some, it is natural, while others have to learn and acquire it. For those who have to learn it, the same process in which they do so is called personal development.
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How do leadership and its skills relate to personal development?
Self-awareness as a leader makes you constantly check yourself in the position you find yourself in, to understand how much you’re contributing to the situation or position.
It also allows room for improvement because a good leader is someone who makes sure that they’re the best at leading others in what they do at all times and updates themselves regularly. And as a result, due to personal development, such a leader continues to be valuable, unlike the situation in which Dylan from our story, has found himself.
How do you improve your leadership skills through personal development?
- Self-development: Just like we discussed earlier, it is the gradual process of improving oneself. And just like you read earlier, it is closely related to leadership and its skills. A good leader improves himself to be a role model for those under him. How do you do this?
- Reading educative books.
- Asking for feedback.
- Taking constructive criticism well.
- Team development: A good leader, is one who carries his team along. He cares for them, (or at least respects them) motivates them, encourages them, teaches them how to be better at what they do, and develops them.
Successes are rewarded publicly, and failures and shortcomings are addressed behind closed doors. Such an attitude towards your fellow team members like this makes them love and respect you more as their leader. So how can you help your team to develop?
- Learn more about them and their life outside work.
- Organize after-work get-togethers to help them improve their work-life balance to perform better.
- Learn people-skill
- Strategic thinking: A good leader comes up with innovative ideas and cutting edge solutions that help the team create great products and solve problems around the world and help them make more profit too. How do you think strategically?
- Learn to think out of context – out of the box.
- Try to love knowledge and be ready for any kind of change.
- Try to keep yourself up with the latest trends in your field.
- People-skill: People-skill which is synonymous with interpersonal skills are skills that give you the ability to communicate effectively with other people. They allow you to be able to empathize and understand people so that in many cases, you get what is best for both parties. Having effective people-skill also assists you in solving disputes among other people – and in most cases, people under you. How do you develop people skills?
- Listen more to people and talk more about what interests them.
- Develop your Emotional Intelligence (EQ).
- Practice empathy.
- Creativity: While creativity and critical thinking go hand in hand, creativity is the innate ability to generate new ideas from scratch to solve a problem, or to create something new entirely. Critical thinking is sometimes needed to find the inspiration to create something new. It makes it easier to solve problems and achieve set goals.
A good leader does his best to be creative in his approach towards a problem, and he thinks critically and strategically to solve it. How can you be creative as a leader?
- Think out of the box.
- Practice meditation to find your inspiration.
- Surround yourself with positive energy as it can help your creative thinking.
- Problem-solving: Problem-solving is a major part of a leader’s role. It also involves creativity and strategic thinking. It is a process by which a solution is brought to an existing problem by finding ideas and can be achieved with teamwork. How do you solve problems as a leader?
- Find what the problem is and identify it.
- Evaluate the problem and analyze it.
- Brainstorm all possible solutions with the help of your team.
My conclusion about personal development and leadership
Personal development and leadership goes hand in hand.
In case you are in the same shoe as Dylan, take the advice in this article to heart.
If you are the best version of yourself, and you learn people-skill, you will lead any team to success all the time. You can take this to the bank!
Writer: Tomisin Shalewa