Answer These Three Questions to Determine Your Quality As A Leader


Ever worked for a leader who was so inspirational and gifted,your memories of how he or she took care of the team stay vivid to this day?

Chances are,the reason you still talk about this leader from years ago is because of how he or she made you feel.

Renowned poet and civil rights activist Maya Angelou famously quipped,”People will forget what you said,people will forget what you did,but people will never forget how you made them feel.”

3 Questions John Wurzburger Asks To Assess Leadership Skills

Leadership is a matter of the mind and the heart–it is about results and relationships. So,if you are in a leadership role now or aspiring to one,the journey toward leadership greatness never finishes. However, it does have a beginning point.

And sometimes the beginning of the journey requires some challenging questions you will need to ask yourself to raise your own bar. Can you answer yes to any — and hopefullyall — of these?

1. Are you approachable?

Before you assume you are fit to direct,this is an important question to ask. Because if you are going to lead,you want to be approachable. If you are not,it could hurt your leadership in several ways:

  • Your employees may be less willing to share information for fear of disapproval;
  • your staff members could be disconnected from you; and
  • your staff members will fear taking possession of the job,and will just look to you for answers.

To be approachable means promoting a culture where feelings of devotion and a sense of purpose are felt among staff.

How to become more approachable:

  • Keep an open-door policy;
  • share information;
  • spark non-work related discussions;
  • be person and show your sense of humor;
  • take part in volunteer or professional development activities with your employees;
  • be an advocate for your employees when they face challenges–private or professional.

2. Can you foster an environment where people are emotionally secure?

Research on liberty and psychological safety by Amy Edmondson of Harvard suggests that when encouraging leaders foster a culture of safety — meaning employees are free to speak up,experimentation,give opinions,and request help — it leads to better learning and performance outcomes.

When emotional safety is absent,anxiety is present. And anxiety is detrimental to achieving a company’s full potential. We just can’t be engaged or innovative when we are afraid. Some subscribe to the notion that fear is a motivator,but what fear does is kill trust — the supreme demotivator.

How to create more psychological safety:

  • Create a bond with employees,and remind them of the value;
  • praise them for their performance with specific examples for positive reinforcement;
  • keep your people in the loop regarding forthcoming plans and projects,deadlines,and any changes happening,good or bad;
  • give your employees a sense of security by ensuring that their work and status as employees are on solid ground.

When tough problems arise,address the issue straight away by meeting with the staff in person (if physically possible),or send an email to set people’s expectations. Always pull on the side of hope,strength,perseverance,and compassion. Your job as a leader is to do whatever it takes to meet the needs of your people–demonstrating that you value them not just as workers but also as human beings. Finally,don’t leave anybody hanging by heading radio silent.

3. Are you leading with integrity?

John Wurzburger

Let me give it to you straight: Your employees are watching your every move for a leader. If you are acting unprofessional or dishonest,they understand. And if they know,you have already lost the battle for respect.

Psychologist and best-selling writer Henry Cloud wrote the book on why integrity matters and sheds good light on the topic. In Integrity: The Courage to Meet the Demands of Reality,Cloud says,”Who a person is will ultimately determine if their brains,talents,competencies,energy,effort,deal-making skills,and opportunities will succeed.”

So,who are you,really? As you learn and adapt to all elements of your integrity,you’ll eventually arrive at a point where it becomes easier to develop trust,repair a connection following a conflict,listen with compassion,and provide critical feedback to build up someone.

How to lead with more integrity:

  • Lead by example,be reliable,be credible,talk with truth;
  • raise the bar and hold yourself accountable to a higher standard — one where your followers will want to emulate;
  • follow through on your promises or commitments;
  • do the perfect thing;
  • be true to yourself rather than be someone you are not. By being who you are,you do not just trust the decisions and decisions that you make,but others trust you too. They’ll respect you for standing by your values and beliefs.

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