What are some of the key traits you deem valuable to a leader? Vision, character, trust, love and influence are some of the things that come to my mind. But one of the most valuable tools in my tool box is INSIGHT.
Insight by definition is the immediate understanding of the significance of an event or action. Developing this all important trait will prove to be invaluable on your leadership journey.
Everyday we are faced with challenges, obstacles, test, trials or whatever you want to call them. Being able to understand what happen, why it happened and how it happen is essential to successful leadership.
The quicker you are at utilizing insight, the faster you can put a plan in action or know your next movement. Now, let me put a marker right here. When I say understand why something happened, I am not talking about always knowing the reason, some thinks we cannot explain. But gather all the information you can and use your insight to make the correct decisions.
I don’t only rely on my personal insight; I have a league of mentors, counselors and advisors I tap into as well. Especially when a situation that I have not personally dealt with arises, I without hesitation call upon others. They help me chart a course for my next move.
I have learned that one size does not fit all in my leadership journey. So, I have learned to rely on insight to make critical decisions. Some times I hear leaders say it’s “Black and White” no gray areas. But in reality, there are gray areas. Two people can do the exact same thing, but for totally different reasons.
Employing insight will allow you to make the right call. Let’s say for example, two employees are late for work. One was late because they over slept, the other because they had a flat tire. Should both receive repercussions, should only one? Insight gives you the ability to make these tough choices.
If you are just starting or developing in your leadership journey, surround yourself with people that have great insight, don’t go it alone.
Insight has served me well, and I am sure it will be a great companion for you as well.
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Think Better, Live Better
I have had the privilege to lead in many different leadership positions in various types of organizations. I have lead in government, church, colleges, non-profits, sports teams and the Army. In each of these arenas I was able to achieve great success, because I learned not to abuse my influence.
Great leaders understand that leadership is about influencing those that they lead in a positive way and direction. Your team looks to you for guidance, instructions and direction, you are a symbol.
As a leader if you are not careful you can abuse your influence, and manipulate those you follow. I see this all the time, this can even happen in relationships between two individuals. Often I see it in churches, where the leader will use their influence to accomplish personal goals, this is abuse.
So, how do you check yourself to ensure you are not abusing your influence over those you lead? Here is a quick check list to ask yourself:
1. Is what I am asking them to do, benefiting the team
2. Have I considered their goals as well
3. Will asking this individual create a hardship for them
There are times when we require our teams to come out the comfort zone and push beyond the normal; I’m not talking about these times. Influence abuse occurs when we as leaders become more concerned with our own goals and lose sight of the overall vision.
Don’t become influence abusers; check your motives at all times.
Think Better, Live Better!
Dr. Will is an author, speaker and leadership consultant....