5 ways to develop your leadership skills

There are different leadership styles but enhancing your skills is key to getting ahead.

There are many different ways to be a leader. There’s the classic autocratic leader versus the laidback approach to management that sound familiar. But you can also be a transactional leader or a transformational leader which may not be as familiar to you. No matter your style, developing your leadership skills will be key to advancing your career. With that in mind, here are 5 things you can do to develop and enhance those skills.

Take on more projects

A key skill for any leader is the ability to get things done. Taking on more projects can help you develop skills such as time management, delegation and people management. Projects that will take you out of your comfort zone will be especially helpful while showing enthusiasm for more responsibility should impress senior management. Just don’t take on more than you can handle!

Work on your emotional intelligence

Knowing how to manage people in challenging situations is a great asset to have. Emotional intelligence has become critical for any good leader to possess. This involves enhancing your knowledge in the areas of active listening, empathy and communication skills. Look for articles and courses in these areas to improve your knowledge.

Practice discipline

Good habits can teach you many things such as time management and discipline. Try to form these habits in work by meeting deadlines, avoiding letting meetings overrun and keeping work and personal life separate where necessary. Good discipline from you can inspire discipline in others!  

Perform a self-assessment

Honesty is the best policy and that is especially true when it comes to ourselves. A good leader will know their strengths and weaknesses. Sit down and write out what yours are. This can help you avoid blind spots while also identifying areas where you require extra training to develop skills.

Learn to follow

An underrated skill is knowing when to lead and when to follow. Being able to put aside your ego for the betterment of the team or workplace will pay dividends in the long term. So be prepared to listen to opposing views and consider the merits of what’s being said. Often people will think of things that will surprise you!