How To Be An Inspiring Leader

  • Published on:
    June 9, 2019
  • Reading time by:
    6 minutes
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3 keys to manage your staff and becoming an inspiring leader.

Whether you are a small business owner or a big company CEO, you can’t do everything by yourself. As your business expands, you need to recruit people to work for you – or, should I say, with you. 

These last few years, human resources management has evolved a lot. New generations of workers need more than just orders from some distant manager: hierarchy tends to horizontalize, as employees need to know the “why” and feel that their job is useful, and being considered for it.   

After all, companies are asking more and more soft skills from their staff: creativity, improvisation, multi-tasking, autonomy, passion, curiosity, etc. So, why workers should evolve and improve themselves, while leaders stay at the Stone Age in term of management? 

Here are a few keys that I believe are crucial to lead your team, with respect and kindness, to achieve incredible results and becoming the inspiring leader you’ve always dreamed to be. 

Those keys are linked to three fundamental qualities: Respect, Vision and Example.

1. Respect

The first step to a closest relationship with your team is to learn to know them. Remember their name’s, are they married, do they have children? Each and everyone of them has aspirations, passions, and a life outside of the office. It’s important that you acknowledge this life, and realize it is important for them, too.  Of course, depending on your staff’s number, you’ll be able to achieve a different level of proximity. Try to remember some of their tastes, so you can maybe surprise them with a little gift on a special occasion, like, their birthday? 

You don’t need to become too close to them, you’re not friends. But a small gesture now and then won’t hurt, on the contrary. Showing recognition for their efforts, even when the mission is not 100% a success (because of external unpredictable causes, for example), acknowledge and encourage their strengths will increase your workers confidence, motivation and they’ll feel they really belong in your company, which could lead to amazing results.  

In that spirit, your employees need to know they can trust you. Whether they’re facing some issue with a coworker, or having some personal crisis going on, if they come to you for help, or advice, you need to be trustworthy. You should of course draw some boundaries, you’re not their therapist. But you need to listen to them, and they need to know you will never use these informations against them.  

2. Vision

Having a clear vision of your goals is essential. But, sharing that vision with your team is even more important. For this, you need to be clear and consistant. You can’t say to your team that you wish to expand to international in five years one day, then tell them you wish to do so in one year the next week. Once the company’s goals are clearly determined, you’ll be able to guide your salaries with some direction. Three or four principal guidelines to keep in mind while working on their day to day missions. Those guidelines would form the spirit of your company, and contribute to its image. 

3. Example

Let’s be clear. Your company is your dream, and you probably worked your ass off to create and expand it. It’s only natural, it’s your dream goal. It’s not your team’s dream. They are probably (if you choose them well) really passionate about their jobs. But at the end of the day, it’s only a job. 

So, why would they work their asses off to help realize someone’s dream, when that someone is not making any effort? My point is, the best way to lead is to lead by example. You can’t stay chillin’ in your office while sending everyone to do your dirty work. Sure, you’re paying them for it, and you expect them to do their job. But you can’t expect them to do incredible hours if you’re gone everyday by 4.  You can, and you have to delegate, because you can’t do everything by yourself. But you have to be there, to motivate and inspire your staff with your passion and energy.

You should also celebrate team work, as a part of the team yourself, and support team spirit in your company. Rewarding the individuals for their success is also important, as well as having their back in case of a crisis. They need to know you’ll be on their side, protecting them. It’s only then, that they’ll be really loyal to you, and willing to fully invest themselves in their job, and probably have better results than ever. 

Don’t forget that: a happy employee is an employee who feels considered for the work accomplished, who knows the core values and goals of the company, who feels part of a team and who knows the leader can be trusted.  If you need an example of inspiring, positive and kind leadership, look up to Jacqueline in the amazing show that is The Bold Type. She really is the leader that we should all aspire to be. 

Sandrine Dagniau

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