Ways to Become a Better Leader

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If you are in a leadership role, you are likely always on the lookout for tips and tricks to improve your management style. Direct Capital is here to help.

Here’s the thing: There isn’t just one way, two ways, or even ten ways to become a better leader.  There are a lot of them, and you have to find the tactics and techniques that work for you. Here’s a list of our top 7 ways to become a better leader. All you have to do is choose the ones you want to focus on.

  1. Lead by example: An Inc.  article writes, “Great bosses do it the hard way. They take unpopular stands. They take unpopular steps. They take real risks not for the sake of risks but for the sake of the reward they believe is possible.” The moral here is don’t go with the status quo. You don’t want all of your employees to be the same or work in similar fashions. You hired them all to play different roles in the company. You want to inspire them to continue to be different – to take risks when the reward (something they believe in) is so powerful. As soon as you begin to do that, to lead by example, they will too.
  2. Thrive on uncertainty: When your employees fear trouble is brewing, they’ll want to run for the hills. People don’t want to stay at a company when the leader is uncertain about what will happen next. But great leaders thrive in that environment. They see unexpected challenges and roadblocks as an opportunity for improvement. Making major business changes is tough to justify when things are moving smoothly. Sometimes what you need to make your business stronger is a positive change in process and ideas.
  3. Be a person: Something we hear often around our office before a big presentation is this: Remember, the executives are people, too. Such a simple statement, but one that relaxes and eases the mind because of its truth. When an executive, leader, or manager acts like a person and not a business robot, their employees feel more comfortable around them. True leaders are the ones who wear their emotions on their sleeve; the ones who will tell others when they’ve made a mistake but also praise them when they’ve done excellent work.
  4. Have bigger goals: Everyone that has a stake in your business – from the new hire to your tenured Operations Manager – wants it to succeed. They all work to achieve company goals. So, if that is the only thing you’re striving for, something isn’t quite right. Great leaders want more not only for their business but for their employees and their community as well. Jeff Haden on Inc. writes, “Great bosses embrace a larger purpose – and help their employees embrace a larger purpose – because they know business isn’t just business.”
  5. Pay attention to everyone: Whether you are a large company or a small one, pay attention to each person (or department) individually. They’ll feel appreciated knowing that you value them as an employee or recognized a department’s job well done on a project. It’s important for you – their leader- to understand that not one department is more valuable than another.
  6. Don’t overdress: If your business has casual Fridays or if every day is casual, dress like it. Don’t be the only stickler in a suit. You want to dress like everyone else does to show that you are, as we said in #3, a person. John Brandon in another Inc. article writes, “Wearing a suit denotes power and authority – it also separates you from the masses.”
  7. Give back: One of Direct Capital’s core values is Give and every week we donate to different local charities. But here’s the thing about it – our leadership doesn’t give because they have They do it because they want to. Employees are empowered by leadership that gives back to the community that they are a part of because they feel like they’re also doing something for the greater good. To become a better leader, think of ways you can help the community. Give money, volunteer, sponsor a little league baseball game, anything that will help make the community and your team stronger.

Great leadership boosts employee morale, but also leads to more dollars and success for your business. You can never be too good at being a leader so choose one (or more!) of these tips and start improving your leadership skills today.

For information on Direct Capital and other ways we help small businesses like yours succeed, visit our website or give us a call at 866-777-0117.

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