In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, there is a lot of destruction and chaos going on in the North East.  It has been devastating to watch as so much has washed away with the rain, snow and powerful winds.  My thoughts and prayers go out to all those effected by the storm as she continues to head north!

As a leader – what kind of wake are you leaving behind you? Is it a trail of demoralized workers who do their job but who have lost the light in their eyes? Who no longer feel the passion for their work and are down trodden feeling like a cog in the machine? Perhaps it’s just a trail of chaos, in-fighting and bad attitudes?

Or, have you tapped into your strengths as a leader as well as the strengths of those on your team? Building a well balanced group that are excited to come to work each day because they know they get to contribute their talents and expertise fully?

The first clue to look for…

Do your employees walk through the door with a smile on their face or a look of dread and resignation…?

Leadership is a tricky game and learning how to empower your team in a good way that raises everyone up as you move forward isn’t always easy.  It takes courage to lead with heart, wisdom and intellect, knowing when to bring in the right people for different aspects of the work.

Here are 3 Keys* to help you increase you leadership quotient and build great teams:3 keys

1. INVEST in the STRENGTHS of your team.

In the workplace, when an organization’s leadership fails to focus on an individual’s strengths, the odds of an employee being engaged are a dismal 1 in 11 (9%). But when an organization’s leadership focuses on the strengths of it’s employees, the odds soar to almost 3 in 4 (73%). So that means when leaders focus on and invest in their employees’ strengths, the odds of each person being engaged goes up eightfold.

2. MAXIMIZE your TEAM by surrounding yourself with the right people.

While the best leaders are not well-rounded, the best teams are. Research found that top-performing teams have strengths in four specific domains of leadership strength: Executing, Influencing, Relationship Building, Strategic Thinking. When you can better understand the individual strengths of your team, you can also see more clearly the gaps of what skills are still needed for greater success of the whole.

3. UNDERSTAND the NEEDS of your followers.

People follow leaders for very specific reasons. When the Gallup Organization asked thousands of followers, they were able to describe exactly what they need from their leader with remarkable clarity. The four basic needs of Followers are: Trust, Compassion, Stability, Hope. How well do you incorporate and build upon these values as part of your leadership style?

*(Excerpted from Strengths Based Leadership by Tom Rath and Barry Conchie)

From these 3 Leadership Keys, here are some important questions to ponder:

  • What small or large adjustments might you need to make in your team that help everyone work more effectively from their strengths?
  • What gaps might their be in your team and how can you fill them based on the four domains of Leadership Strengths, allowing everyone on the team to work smarter, not harder?
  • How can you learn more about the Needs and Drivers of your followers to become a better leader?

Let me know what small or large shifts you need to make in your team to enhance the overall success of your organization. And if you’d like some other tools to help you expand your skills as a masterful leader, have a read of my previous blog post: “Recognizing the Star Leadership Qualities of your Team”. You can also learn more about your own strengths as a leader with my free Leadership Style Assessment. I look forward to hearing from you!

To Your Success~

Michele