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This is one way that a great leader will look after their team but you should also be doing this in every other way possible too.
As a leader, you are responsible for the health and happiness for those that you are in charge of. As long as they’re in your care, they’re your responsibility. That means that you need to protect them from unfair commands that come from up high and it means that you need to make sure they are comfortable, safe and well looked-after as they work.
A fun example of a leader who embodies this notion is ‘Agent Gibbs’ from NCIS. Gibbs viciously protects his team and will go to great lengths to get them out of trouble – not only with the bad guys but also with the organization itself. As a result, he takes on a patriarchal role and his team love him for it. Sure, he’s a fictional character, but this works in real life too! Your team is your most valuable resource, look after them.
4. A Great Leader Has Control Over Their Emotions
Another feature that great leaders share is the ability to keep control over their emotions. This is important for a number of different reasons. Firstly, as a leader, you need to be able to stay calm when everything is going wrong around you. As a leader, you will act as a barometer for your team: they will decide whether they need to panic on the basis of whether or not you are panicking – emotions are contagious so you need to stay calm.
Being in control of your emotions is also what will allow you to take responsibility and to worry less about how you look and feel.
Likewise, being able to control your emotions is going to allow you to avoid getting angry at staff when they need reprimanding. This is important too, as just because you are in charge, that doesn’t give you permission to get in someone’s face.
Stay calm and you will create the sense that you are in control. In turn, this will build confidence in what you say and do and your team will respect you more. This is something else we can see in the case of Gibbs. What does he do when a bad guy pulls a gun on him? He smiles, or just continues talking. That makes him formidable. Don’t mistake the importance of controlling your emotions as not having them. As we’ll see later, passion is very important. You do need to know when to get heated, it’s just a matter of being able to use that strategically rather than letting it rule your head.
5. A Great Leader Leads by Example
Another trait that is important as a leader is lead by example. That means that you can’t be seen to be a hypocrite and that you are going to provide the perfect blueprint for your team to follow.
One way you do this is by dressing the part. If you present yourself well, then it will show you care and that will rub off on your team. Likewise, if you are asking your team to stay late, then you need to do the same: don’t ask someone beneath you to do anything that you wouldn’t be willing to do yourself.
A great example of this is Winston Churchill. Churchill refused to leave England even when it was being bombed and he even spent his time on the rooftops fire spotting. That gave him much more integrity and won him the respect of the entire nation. Had he fled to Switzerland, what kind of impression would that make? It would have communicated that he didn’t feel safe in the UK and that the people that lived there at the time shouldn’t either!
6. A Great Leader Sees the Bigger Picture
By staying in command and being willing to take the flack while keeping your team on track, you should find you start to become more and more adept at avoiding mistakes and meeting deadlines and targets. You’ll be able to keep the ship afloat in short, but this is not enough if you want to be considered a ‘great leader’. Truly great leaders are visionaries. They are people who can see the bigger picture and who have a goals and dreams for their team. Likewise, they don’t get so caught up in the little details that they end up micromanaging – that’s what the specialists are for.
The best example of someone like this is Steve Jobs. Jobs was not a programmer, an engineer or a designer: he was someone who had a vision for where he thought the company should go and who knew enough about each area to help his team get there. That’s why he became a legend and it’s why he is so remembered today.
That said, this doesn’t mean that you should completely ignore the smaller details. Small things do make a big difference and this is something else that Steve Jobs knew – it’s why he was so keen to get things like the typeface just right in his software. Follow suit by spending equal time with every aspect of your project but also being sure not to miss the forest for the trees!Other Details
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- Year Released/Circulated: 2020
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