Posted by Charlie Mernagh on

Leadership Theories

What is it that makes some people excel in leadership roles? Leadership theories seek to explain how and why certain people become leaders. Such theories often focus on the characteristics of leaders, but some attempt to identify the behaviours that people can adopt to improve their own leadership abilities in different situations.

Early debates on the psychology of leadership often suggested that such skills were simply abilities that people were born with. In other words, these theories proposed that certain people were simply "born leaders."

Some more recent theories propose that possessing certain traits may help make people nature leaders, but that experience, and situational variables also play a critical role.

‘Leaders are born not made’ Historical perspective of being born to lead by right of birth

While There Are Many Traits That Make Up A Strong Leader, Some of The Key Characteristics Are:

  • Honesty & Integrity are crucial to get your people to believe you and buy in to the journey you are taking them on
  • Vision: know where you are, where you want to go and enrol your team in charting a path for the future
  • Inspiration: inspire your team to be all they can by making sure they understand their role in the bigger picture
  • Ability to Challenge: do not be afraid to challenge the status quo, do things differently and have the courage to think outside the box
  • Communication Skills: keep your team informed of the journey, where you are, where you are heading and share any roadblocks you may encounter along the way

Some of The Common Traits Shared by Strong Managers Are:

  • Being Able to Execute a Vision: take a strategic vision and break it down into a roadmap to be followed by the team
  • Ability to Direct: day-to-day work efforts, review resources needed and anticipate needs along the way
  • Process Management: establish work rules, processes, standards and operating procedures
  • People Focused: look after your people, their needs, listen to them and involve them

For you to engage your staff in providing the best service to your guests, clients or partners, you must enrol them in your vision and align their perceptions and behaviours. You need to get them excited about where you are taking them while making sure they know what’s in it for them.

With smaller organizations, the challenge lies in making sure you are both leading your team as well as managing your day to day operation. Those who can do both, will create a competitive advantage. Are you both a leader and a manager; what would your staff say if you were to ask them?

Charlie Mernagh

Management and Leadership Training

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