Leader is a person who leads, supports and monitors a group of people and drives them toward the goals of the team. People can judge a leader easily based on the style of leadership or the performance of the team. Leader will be replaced if the team does not meet the requirements or expectation because management will think he or she is not able to manage the team well. From my point of view, leader should not be judged that way because there is no perfect leader which can suit every team. There is only a leader who knows how to bring out the best of the group and match them with specific tasks, thus increase the efficiency and boost the performance. Hence, what a leader has to do to be a good or better leader?
A good leader is able to lead the team towards greater effectiveness and creativity by know the team members. Good leaders are able to analysis the strengths and weakness of every individual, which can help in tasks allocation and partitioning. People will have a better work result or performance if the assigned tasks matched their strengths and capabilities. I was studying finance in my undergraduate and it becomes my strength in assignment group. One of the team leaders knew the team members and he was able to assign the tasks based on individual’s strength, which I have been assigned the finance part. We finished the project earlier than expected and the result was satisfying. Other than that, knowing team members’ name and job title are not enough for leaders to lead the team. Leaders should get close to and know the team members more on personal level. Showing care and help to them will make them feel they are appreciated and valuable. People claim that this is not important but it is a process where trust between leader and team members is built. Trust is powerful when it comes to a team because it can virtually increase the performance of the team. What to become a good leader? Win the hearts and minds of the team.
Once leaders know the team, they should be able to delegate tasks to appropriate individual. Strengths and abilities of every individual will make a significant contribution and a good leader knows how to use those contribution as a tool to complete the tasks. A good leader knows when to step back in order to provide a platform for team members to show case their capabilities and ability. This promotes a healthy learning and competitive environment among the team. Delegation also helps leaders to save the managerial time, which they have more time for the higher-level tasks. Not only that, delegation plays an important role in team members’ engagement. It allows them to participate in the process and make contribution toward the works. However, leaders have to make sure every individual is on the same page before the delegation so the effort and contribution they made will have an impact on the tasks. A good leader should able to use delegation as a tool to increase the confidence and productivity of the team.
There are a lot of qualities a good leader should have but I personally think that excellent communication skill is much more important than other qualities. Leaders know what is in their mind and how the plan goes but are they able to clearly describe or explain it to the team members? It requests a strong communication skill, which leaders can present their ideas clearly to the team members, so everyone knows exactly what is going on and their responsibilities. An excellent verbal and written communication skill will help leaders in idea communication and also enable leaders to listen to the voice of team members. Strong communication skill does not only mean an individual is able to clearly and succinctly talk about the idea but also able to listen to others’ suggestions and ideas. A good leader should able to switch him or herself freely between listening and talking, which encourage team members to speak. I can tell it is a nightmare to have a leader which does not have such a strong communication skill from my experience. He assigned the tasks to everyone but he did not clearly explain his thought to every team member and it caused the team members have to re-do everything after the first group meeting. Hence, strong communication skill is an essential quality for a good leader.
Everyone can be a leader but a good leader will have more qualities that a leader has. It is not easy to be a good leader because things worth having do not come easily. A good leader is not born, it is formed through experience and training.
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