How to become a good leader? – I

Let me begin with that what I consider a good leader might differ from your own view and that is totally okay. I even want you to challenge what I write and maybe add how you see it. I am convinced that becoming the best leader one can be is a lifelong process and once you think you figured everything out you are up for a surprise. People change, society changes and we have to constantly readjust and reevaluate our own leadership style.

That is why I want to go on a discovery tour and collect some of the elements that make up good leaders and how we can become one ourselves.

The first step is learning from the best. Maybe you have a role model or maybe you experienced good leadership during a specific situation. Maybe you read or watched about something and it sounded appealing or someone told you about a leader and what they did. And maybe think outside of the box. Maybe you had a good teacher. Maybe you engage in a hobby or think about your parents. It can come from everywhere. Collecting those impressions and stories will help you to discern what you consider good leadership and what feels right for you.

However, feeling it doesn’t mean you can and will actually apply and behave in a similar way once you are in a leadership position. Knowing and acting are two completely different things. Especially when it comes to leadership. I mean we all “know” how we would do it and what would be best but once we are in such a position, things look differently.

The key is to take on those roles and positions to see how you are doing in those situations. And please don’t blame yourself or be discouraged when your vision and reality don’t match. It’s actually best to have a mentor who can have a look at how you are doing, and he/she can give regular feedback. Also, get feedback from the ones you lead. This might be scary, and in the beginning when you make mistakes (yes you will =)) this can be the biggest accelerator for your leadership skills.

Maybe you will discover a whole new aspect about yourself. Maybe you will not feel so good with some of the things you envisioned in the first place. That is okay and normal. Take those experiences and constantly adjust. Try out different things and be curious. And don’t forget to be humble and keep on learning! =)

Here you can get to part two.

Take care, Stephan

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