The organizational world is evolving continuously, taking at the centre of its evolution the new discoveries in technology. But even though, there are human skills that are gaining an extraordinary importance. Leadership skills, with no doubt, are one of the most demanded.
In my years of career as Marketing Director & Executive Board Member, it was one of the areas where I most invested. Why? I saw that Leadership was crucial to succeed in complex and dynamic environments.
LEADERSHIP is not something you learn from one day to the next. It is of course a matter of knowledge, but also a matter of practise and routines.
I work with a Leadership training framework, that helps professionals to make substantial progresses on their Leadership Skills. This framework is driven by some key principles, but specially driven by lot of practice & routines that can be easily included in your daily routines: 100% adaptable to any kind of job/responsibility/seniority.
Let me share the 7 different areas I cover in this Leadership Framework:
1. Influence & Proactivity.
There is a direct link between leadership & focus. The higher the focus we have, the higher probability of being successful.
But we need to put the focus on what we can really control, and consequently what we can influence. Our proactivity, well directed to our influence areas, will has a high correlation with success.
There are some tools & methods to identify “what is in our control” and “what is not”, how to deal with conflict in those situations, and how to communicate it.
This is the 1st point to improve your leadership skills, to FOCUS just on what you can control. No more secrets, just routines!
Before starting the journey, visualization exercises are strongly recommended. Visualization is proven in many disciplines, even for worldwide known athletes.
To lead with success, it’s key to set up the goals of your journey (the final ones and the middle steps).
There are many tools & processes to set tup them in a very efficient & meaningful way. My favourite ones are:
- The future-back methodology: as it is immensely helpful to cascade the objectives in micro-objectives and split them by areas.
- And the OKRs (Objective Key Results): as it helps to define the objectives in a specific way, that allow to track progress very easily.
Once your goals are visualized and stablished, you need to draw your different roles (yes, you can have different roles), to achieve them.
Ex. I have a role as leader, managing my sales teams / I have a role as Key Account controlling my customer P&L / I have a role as trainer, as I need to work in my team soft skills development / etc.
With a quite simple framework you will identify your different roles and how them will contribute to achieve the final goals.
3. Make Choices Time.
Everything is important, and everything needed to be done for yesterday… That is what we think/feel continuously… But we know that is not true, and that is not possible.
Do a simple exercise:
- Take your “professional roles” (leader, manager, executive, teacher, mentor, etc.) and join the to your “personal ones” (mother, husband, friend…).
- And now start to plan your weekly agenda for any of the roles….
- What will happen? ##ERROR, ##ERROR, ##ERROR,
It is crazy, Yes! Conclusion, make choices is not a choice, it is a must. When you work with focus and having a strong correlation between your roles & goals, you’ll find the way.
4. Put yourself in someone’s shoes.
To lead, we need to know well the people involved & the context.
The first thing to do is to draw our influence & interests mapping. And the second thing, is an exercise that I really love it: it is a role play simulation where you put yourself in other’s place to discover/understand their desires & motivations.
As result of this step, if we know well others, we’ll work for win-win solutions. Being more efficient and clearly goal oriented.
5. Practise your Coaching Mindset.
Coaching key skills are extremely valuable, and any single person can use them in different situations (personal or professional). In Leadership environment, these skills are a strong contributor to stablish amazing relations.
In role play situations we can put in practise the boundaries of coaching: active listening, powerful questions, and direct communication, among others.
Once you adopt them, you won’t never let them go.
6. Your rules / your ways of doing.
To be effective and “to be on the same page” with the teams you lead. It’s key to stablish some common behaviours & language. And ideally, they should be co-created to guarantee engagement and motivation.
When these language/behaviours are implemented, the level of autonomy & effectiveness will improve progressively.
Team Coaching methodologies are highly effective for co-creation.
7. Take care of yourself.
Personal purposes are important pieces of motivation in leadership trainings. Why? Because our “professional” roles are highly influenced by our personal ones.
The better we are in our personal purposes, the better performance we will have leading in our professional environment.
Through quite simple exercises, we can learn the importance of it, and also teach our teams. This stage is key to close the circle for being a good & happy leader.
Leadership skills are Non-negotiable ones in current times. Do whatever you want but invest time in being a better leader. There are tons of knowledge available: read books, listen podcasts, search in google, assist to workshops, etc. But don’t forget that to practice & set up routines are key.
The focus of my framework is on the practice, with these 3 main characteristics:
- Learning through (your) real situations.
- Easy tools and methods (“hands on” approach).
- Ready to be applied the day after.
Find your way but learn & lead. There are no excuses to start improving your leadership skills NOW.