There are many qualities that a great leader may possess. While some of these qualities may come natural to a few, there are several leadership behaviors that are patterned after those that came before us. Although there are benefits to learning from experienced leaders, sometimes, we just get it wrong. Sometimes we try to live up to how we believe a leader should operate and that can create a negative workplace and disconnection with employees. The prevailing misunderstandings of leadership can hurt an organization so here are five leadership truths that every leader or aspiring leader needs to know.
1. Leaders Don’t Know Everything
Many people think that leaders must know everything, even things that are only tangentially relevant to their job. This is incorrect — they’re there to guide. They surround themselves with the right people and rely on them for expertise. Instead of feeling insecure about not knowing something, a good leader will understand his or her role in the process.
2. Leaders Can Make Mistakes
No, leaders aren’t perfect human beings. In fact, you could even argue that leaders make the most mistakes due to the responsibilities of their role. However, this is to be expected, as they tend to function ahead of the crowd and experience some things before others. By making a few mistakes along the way, they’re more likely to reach success.
3. Leaders Can Be Insecure
Being a positive and confident leader is good, but nobody can be like that all the time. Leaders are human too, and they can still fall prey to insecurities. A good leader will fight against that by nurturing his or her self-esteem. They’re always aware that they’re role models, and they understand the importance of disciplining their emotions.
4. Leaders Can Be Nice
These days, we keep hearing about leaders taking advantage of people and preventing them from making it up in the world. This contributed to the creation of a popular belief that people in positions of leadership must be mean to protect themselves and to demonstrate their power.
In truth, a kind leader is far more likely to be more successful in the workplace. They tend to be flexible, supportive, and ready to listen and help their coworkers. Though they often appear firm, they still accept help from others. This approach usually leads to a healthier work environment, as team members are more productive, motivated, and appreciative.
5. Leaders Are An Example
A great leader never wants to boss people around or humiliate them. Instead of telling people what to do; they tend to lead by example. As the saying goes, leaders lead themselves before leading anybody else. Instead of wanting power over their subordinates, they strive to empower and influence them with their wisdom, knowledge, and understanding.