One of the main roles of a manager is to provide guidance and clear, decisive leadership to a team.
Effective or ineffective leadership doesn't just impact the leader's reputation; it can also have a profound effect on a team's success. Effective leaders tend to be confident, enthusiastic communicators who can inspire and empower their teams.
Characteristics of effective leaders are as follows:
- Effective team leaders encourage team members to recognize the advantages of working together. Leaders support individuals and encourage cooperation, rather than competition.
- Effective leaders are good at communicating. They keep their teams informed and share and discuss ideas with them. In turn, this leads to open communication between team members. Teams welcome monitoring and feedback.
- Effective leaders ensure that their teams understand the reasons for and consequences of any changes being made. They encourage their teams to be innovative and to learn from mistakes, rather than punishing these mistakes.
- Effective leaders encourage team members to ask questions. They tell their teams what needs to be done, but not necessarily how to do it. The leaders encourage team members to make decisions, demonstrate initiative, and develop new skills.
In contrast, ineffective leaders have the following characteristics:
- Ineffective leaders tend to create divisions within teams to control the teams. Sometimes they fear that a united team might overrule them. This can prevent team members from working together effectively.
- Ineffective leaders don't communicate well. They concentrate on the negative or fail to keep their teams informed. Team members aren't open with each other or the rest of the organization. Because they're punished for their mistakes, they tend to be secretive.
- Ineffective leaders are suspicious of change and communicate negatively about it. As a result, their team members also fear change. They are afraid to innovate because there may be negative consequences if a new approach fails.
- Ineffective leaders rigidly control their teams, not trusting them to make decisions and making them afraid to show initiative. Leaders often take the credit for any good work done by their teams, so team members aren't motivated to succeed.
In summary, it's important that as the leader of a team, you encourage teamwork, foster open communication, help team members welcome change, and encourage and support team members who demonstrate initiative.
Course: Management & Communication
Topic: Impact of Leadership