If your vision of success includes starting an organization, owning a company, or putting together a team, you need to become good at leadership. If you cannot lead well, you will not be successful.
When I discovered this, leadership became one of my passions.
For those who are naturally gifted at it, leadership can be mastery. For them, leading people is like walking down a dark corridor. They have a sense of where the problems and pitfalls lie.
The subject of leadership can be overwhelming and confusing. Where does leadership start? What mistakes are you making in your leadership position? How can we gain influence with others?
I am here today to let you know some of the leadership mistakes you are probably making in your leadership position. It is very obvious that you are a leader or about to become one since you look interested in the post.
Here are 5 common mistakes that leaders are probably making;
1. Using Position to Lead
A leader role is not to control people or stay on top of things, but rather to guide, energize and excite. The easiest way to define leadership is by position. Once you have a position or title, people will identify you with it.
However, positions and titles are very misleading. A position always promises more than it can deliver. Having a leadership position does not make you a leader; rather, it is an opportunity to become a leader.
The biggest mistake you can ever make is to use your position as a leader to control people to do what you want. This is very wrong because there are so many implications. Leaders who rely on position to lead often disregard their subordinates, some don’t even like people!
Positional leaders focus on control instead of contribution, they work to gain titles. What this can lead to? The best people, feeling undermined and put down, leaves the department or organization and looks another job elsewhere.
If you want to be a good leader, you must avoid this mistake and you use your leadership position to influence others.
2. You Trade Entitlement for Movement
Some people feel because they have been given a leadership role, it means they have been working very hard than their colleagues. Sometimes, leadership positions don’t come because of hard work, it sometimes comes due to what the organization sees in you. In one word, ‘Potentials’.
Good leaders don’t take anything for granted, they keep working and leading. Leadership isn’t a right. It’s a privilege. It must be continually earned. If you possess any sense of entitlement, it will work against you. If you’ve thought in terms of position, change your focus.
Instead, think about your leadership potential. What kind of leader do you have the potential to become? What kind of positive effect can you have on the people you lead?
3. You Don’t include Others in Decision Making
Leadership is all about us and not just you alone. Some bad leaders just go into their closet, think of something and the next day call for meeting to relate a new development without even thinking about the effect it will have on their subordinate or try to hear from them.
You mount rules and regulations on your subordinate and make the workplace unfriendly for working with joy.
You need to include others in any of your decision making. It involves collaboration.
4. You Don’t Act as a Role Model
I have once worked in an organization where senior staff was not obey the rules she gave. It got others talking about it and even when she heard, she gave deaf ear to it. She just concluded by saying, ‘Do what I say but don’t do what I do because you might get sack’.
This is not leadership by example. You can’t lead people until they like you. It affected the mindset of other staffs and this led to some of the staff leaving the organization to go work with one of its competitors.
5. You Always Claim Right
Nothing is more annoying when a leader makes a mistake and can’t seem to agree with it but instead prove right out of it. You did something thinking it was going to go as planned but failed, your subordinate showed you your mistakes and corrected you. Instead of you to accept it, say ‘am sorry’ or ‘thank you’, you still argue that you knew what you were doing.
As a leader, wherever you go wrong on something, always accept it. Some leaders don’t even ask for help when they know they don’t have the answer to the problem at hand. They prefer doing it and when it fail, they put the blame on their subordinate for not showing up at the time of working on it.
Now, you have read about some leadership mistakes you are probably making, go back and correct these mistakes. You may fall victim for all or for 3 maybe. Go back to your team and be a better leader that you once were failing in.
See you at the top!