Leadership skills - just for the Bosses?Posted in : HR Updates on 25 September 2013
Paul Fieldhouse writes:
“Is Leadership just for the bosses?”
For many years we have recruited new team members solely on skills basis, I need an Engineer, Hairdresser or a Consultant, we place the ad in the paper and await the onslaught of CV’s and applications, we trawl through looking for the best skilled at the job and shortlist for interview and select the candidate we think best fits our needs.
However, within a short period of time we find an individual who has no passion for work, tardy at time keeping, upsets others in the team by not playing as a team member and is aggressive and unwilling to go the extra mile for the business - ever had that experience?
So my question, “Is Leadership just for the bosses?” is based on many years of research and examining the skills and behaviours associated with great leadership, many of which are simply about becoming a better person.
For ten years now research has told us that to be successful in our personal and professional lives we need emotional intelligence (EQ) and, while our IQ is still important, research has established clear links between specific emotional skills and outstanding leadership success.
This research challenges the conventional wisdom that good leaders use their authority to dominate followers and tell them what to do by enforcing compliance. The idea that effective leaders can use their charismatic personalities to manipulate others into conformity, no longer works.
Great leaders have the skills to manage their emotions well and influence the emotions of other people toward positive outcomes. In other words, leaders must become masters of mood and lead organisations that excite, energise and enthuse their customers.
So what are these skills, can you really measure them, and, more importantly, how can people in business build them quickly and cost-effectively?
The emotional power to accept responsibility, back personal judgments and be self-reliant in planning and making important decisions.
The ability to maintain self-respect and personal confidence.
The knack for characterised by positive expectations.
Not just ‘the glass is half full’ kind, but optimism as a strategy - as a way of dealing with difficulties and sensing opportunities. Emotionally intelligent people look on the brighter side of life and sense opportunities even in the face of adversity. They are resilient, can see the big picture and where they are going, and are able to focus on the possibilities of what can be achieved.
Emotionally intelligent people are aware of their emotional experience and have the capacity to recognise how their feelings and emotions impact on their personal opinions, attitudes and judgments. In other words, they remain open to discovering new things about themselves and are not afraid to modify their behavior.
People who know how to manage their reserves of emotional energy and have achieved an effective level of work/life balance. They appear to thrive in setting challenging personal and professional goals and their enthusiasm is contagious.
People who are able to express their feelings, thoughts and beliefs openly in a straightforward way, while respecting the fact that others may hold a different opinion or expectation. They are comfortable challenging the views of others and give clear messages.
The ability to adapt thinking, feelings and actions in response to changing situations and be tolerant of others, and receptive to new ideas. In other words, they are champions of change.
This is the skill that enables a person to grasp the emotional dimension of a business situation and create resonant connections with others. This is also the skill that makes talent dance in an organisation.
Emotionally intelligent individuals have the ability to manage their emotions well and restrain their actions until they have time to think rationally. They are able to stay calm in stressful situations and maintain productivity without losing control. This skill is critical to building and maintaining a consistent leadership presence and for becoming a ‘trusted advisor’ to people.
So when we look at these skills, wouldn’t it be great if all of our team were continually working to improve and develop themselves?
Development of these skills adds real commercial value to the balance sheet, and this value can be measured in any successful business as emotional capital.
If emotional capital is the creative energy that your people bring to work and the enthusiasm that customers have for your company and products, then emotional capitalists are individuals who manage their own emotional energy well and know how to inspire others to create products, solve problems and deliver superior service.
As individuals in your business grow and develop these so called “soft skills” you will be amazed to see the impact that they can have on the people around them.
Building these skills is the key to attracting, developing and retaining talent in any business and the major source of competitive advantage.
You can either research and plan activities in each area to develop your self and your teams or you can contact us to arrange for your own personal Emotional Capital assessment and develop a specific action plan with our executive coaches.
Of course the application is also highly recommended to support your recruitment process to ensure you eliminate the experience we discussed at the beginning of this article.This article is correct at 04/11/2015
The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.