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Inspiring leaders have a distinct vision, create thoughtful strategies, deliver results and inspire people all at the same time. When you see this level of leadership in action, it’s incredible; it makes you feel as though you are a part of something special and that your work has a purpose.
But unfortunately, many of us have also seen the opposite type of leader, and it is a challenging situation to face.
So, what do strong leaders do that unsuccessful leaders don’t? What do you need to focus on to bolster your organization and its people? Here are my top tips for leading with impact. And for an added bonus: These things actually make your job more gratifying too.
1. Bring the energy
If you’re in any type of leadership role, bringing the energy is the most important task at hand. Show up every day and to every interaction with a passion for your people and confidence in what you’re trying to accomplish.
People can tell if you love what you do, and this energy is contagious. Let your energy shine through your body language, your words, your emails — through everything. I mean, if you don’t want to be at work, how can you expect other people to want to?
2. Amplify other voices
Sure, you may have the title, but your power lies in amplifying the voices of others. Diverse perspectives, distinct points of view and creative ideas add richness and momentum to your organization. Not only will everyone benefit from fresh ideas and voices, but your colleagues will feel seen, heard and valued — and that is pivotal.
Be intentional about talking to your staff — whether in one-on-one touch-base meetings or at an annual forum — and spend time listening to what they have to say.
If you’re out of touch with what people need, want and aspire to, that’s going to be a big problem down the road.
3. Stay focused (and delegate when you can’t)
Leaders are juggling a lot. And with all those balls in the air, it can be a challenge to stay focused enough to make significant progress on any one thing. Don’t let anything sit on your plate for too long.
Figure out your top priorities, time-block them on your calendar and anything that’s left over, hand off to the right person to spearhead.
You have built an extraordinary team with wide-ranging experience and expertise, so make sure to leverage their knowledge. Plus, they’ll feel empowered by the opportunity to take the lead.
Additionally, leaders should partner and team up with those who are experts and specialists in areas that are not their focus. Find the yin to your yang. If you are a big-picture thinker, partner with a leader who thrives in the granular details of the business to execute your vision.
4. Keep the big picture and the details both in sight
Here’s something that is essential in the art of great leadership: Be able to see the big picture, but don’t lose sight of the details — they matter, too. Be able to zoom in and out as you need.
Understand the greater ramifications for your company, but also understand that the day-to-day details impact everyone across the organization.
5. Keep learning
Never stop learning and growing. This doesn’t mean you have to be enrolled in a continuing education course, but it does mean you need to put some effort (and habits) into expanding your knowledge and skills.
This could be starting your morning off by reading industry-specific news articles with your cup of coffee, following relevant industry leaders on social media or having a weekly check-in with a mentor.
Whatever your style may be, keep widening your breadth of expertise to grow your business.
The most important part of being a strong leader may be just caring about being a strong leader. Set your intention, find your style, and let your passion fuel your work. Shift what isn’t working and make things your own — you’ve got this.
Mauricio Umansky is the founder and CEO of The Agency in Los Angeles. Connect with him on Instagram.