Falling at the times of crisis is a human trait! Be it a group work at school or project presentation at work, we all step back at distress times looking onto others! But there is always one person who never falls! That one person whom we all look onto! The person whom you could push into principal’s office for getting consent for anything! Inspiring us to learn more, do more and become more, we call him/her Leader.
Who is a good leader?
The leader is a term which is often misled. The leader is not one who leads, but the person who stands within the crowd but stays alone! Someone who walks with the crowd but leads them!
“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way” – John. C. Maxwell
Leadership is not a position or a title, its action and example. Not everyone can be a leader! There are certain qualities you ought to have. And all those qualities can be summed up in one single sentence – be that leader you would follow.
Learn from an inspirational figure
History of every country has stories of great leaders. Indian history cannot be written without the contributions of Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, Bhagat Singh, Subash Chandra Bose, Vallabhai Patel etc. The revolution Bose and Singh brought, the non-violence Gandhi introduced, the calm posture Nehru had, the strong grip that Iron man of India sustained can all be considered as great examples of leadership.
Learn from an inspirational figure. Look up to their speeches and methods of leadership on Internet. The qualities they showed and the integrity they held can be the greatest inspiration you can have. Their methods will help you to hold up your stand and earn respect from your followers.
Okay, you have the qualities a leader should have. Now analyse yourself and point out your weak points. The next step is improving in those areas where you suck. For example, if you aren’t a good communicator, practise speaking whenever you can. If you are backward in taking decisions, take online tests and indulge yourself in activites that would improve the same.
Be a good role model. Be a good leader
You are a leader! There are people who look onto you! So be that leader whom people would want to become. The polite, respectful posture of yours must be what people should follow. The way you dress, the way you speak everything ought to be perfect for others to impersonate you!
Never slouch or look down as you stand or speak. Groom up yourself into an official demeanour and make sure that you stand up with head high in the air! Your body language matters! As said earlier, be that leader who you would follow!
Be a good listener
Well, leader is not someone who always speaks and takes decisions. A good leader let others speak and listens to them! This is where your communication skills come up! Only a good listener can be a good communicator. Listen to what your team mates/ followers have got to say and always consider their opinions without any bias. It’s a common communication mistake that people often cut through someone’s speech or assume the story before listening to whole of it.
A biased leader should NEVER be called a leader!
Be enthusiastic and positive
Life isn’t a cake walk. There will be times when everything falls apart and all hell breaks loose! You entire team may fall but you shouldn’t.
You may be amazed at how a single person can influence a whole team, but that’s what a leader is! You’re the one whom they look onto and make sure that you stay positive at distress! Encourage them!
For example, if your class had bad result instead of saying “It was a bad week” say something like “The result is not satisfactory but it could be made better in the coming weeks!”
Quick and decisive decisions
The title doesn’t mean that one should take wrong decisions quickly. It just implies that a good leader shouldn’t hesitate, procrastinate and bad in time management at the times of taking decisions. Believe in your gut and stay strong in your decisions. One thing that should be kept in mind is that always look at problems rationally not emotionally. A decision taken by you should always have a logical reasoning, never an emotional explanation!
Your voice should hold authority! The way you speak should be in such a way that no one who hears your speech would forget your words and voice. This doesn’t mean that you should be overconfident, but your voice should reflect the intensity of confidence you ought to have.
Words have the power to motivate people and make them do the things they once thought impossible, So your speech must hold that empowerment they require! Refrain yourself from using words “like” and “ummm” Your speech should never hold a sense of hesitation or nervousness. Improvise your speech and talking style by practising speech whenever you can or by taking online courses.
One way to improve your leadership qualities is volunteering yourself. Try becoming a leader figure at clubs you belong (debate club, literary club etc). Use every opportunity to improve your qualities and be the leader you want to be! If there isn’t one, create one! Organize services or lead people for a good cause and improvise yourself!
Some people are born to be leaders! While some strive to be leaders! Both categories can always win if you work for it. The honesty, integrity and confidence a leader has inspires others to be like them! The commitment and passion they put forward without any partiality and the decision making power they hold is something everyone longs for. Creativity and innovation that a good leader put forward can sometimes change the whole world.
If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader!
– John Quincy Adams