6 traits that make up a likable leader
Tuesday, November 11, 2014
As a leader, you set the mood of the company you're in charge of. Whether a workplace environment is a positive or negative one depends on how you handle employees, clients and issues that arise.
So when there's a problem, do you keep your calm and try to handle it? Or do you let your temper flare and track down whoever is responsible so you can handle them? Which reaction do you think a likable leader will have?
The only way you can be an inspiration to others around you is if they like and admire you. It's also easier to gain the respect of employees who do like you as opposed to ones who don't.
Now don't get me wrong here. Being likable isn't about being a people-pleaser or a pushover; it's about being a good leader and creating a positive workplace for the employees, so the company will succeed.
With that said, here is a list of six personality traits that make up a likable leader:
The best leaders are ones who know how to manage without resorting to intimidation — a tactic that is counterproductive and will cause employees to feel like they cannot express ideas or ask questions freely. Intimidation also creates a hostile and stressful work environment, which does not provide any sort of benefit for the business.
Instead what leaders need to do is inspire. It's like President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, "Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it."
If employees are intimidated by you, then they won't want to approach you. If a problem arises, an employees need to feel like they can come to you. Otherwise, they might try to either sweep problems under the rug or handle them alone, possibly creating an even bigger problem in the process.
In order to avoid any mishaps or a lack of communication, the key to being approachable is to converse with employees. Get to know them, and let them get to know you. Chances are you will discover that you have more in common than just the workplace.
For the workplace to be a positive and healthy one, there needs to be respect within the company. As the leader, you're placed in the position to set an example and enforce that. There are, however, some leaders who believe they don't need to give employees respect, yet they demand it from them.
While employees should respect their managers, it doesn't make sense for it to be expected if the managers haven't even earned it. This is especially true for managers who mistreat employees. It's like the old saying goes, 'In order to get respect, you must give it."
As a manager, it's crucial to have patience and not allow yourself to lose control when stressful situations occur. To hold it all together when chaos has erupted within the company is not only professional, but it's noticeable and admirable.
Also, having patience goes hand-in-hand with taking the time to listen to an employee when a problem does arise instead of being quick to react when you haven't heard all of the facts yet. In the end, employees will not only appreciate your patience, but they will also respect you all the more for it.
You must openly show enthusiasm for your role as the manager and for the success of the company. The employees aren't going to see the point of being passionate about their jobs if they don't see it in you.
Openly sharing your passion and excitement for the job helps build a strong foundation for the company and paves the way for others to follow your lead. At times, some employees just need a little push, and as the leader, you're placed in the position to do just that.
When it comes to humility vs. arrogance, it's a no-brainer that humility has the upper hand. Arrogance isn't exactly a positive quality to have, especially within the work setting. Sometimes it can be tempting to allow yourself to feel this way, but one way to avoid falling into this trap would be to keep in mind that the company would not thrive without the employees either.
Be sure to give recognition when and where it's due. Understand that you may not always have all of the answers, so it's OK to receive feedback from others. Lastly, and most importantly, realize that you are part of a team; you just happen to be the leader of that team.
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