Strong leaders have certain qualities that make them attract and likewise, poor leaders also have qualities that affect the way they lead others.
We tend to do better when we’re influenced by powerful leaders but not as well if we’re working for or with a weak leader. Having strong leadership skills is a necessary requirement if we want to have the influence or make the impact we want.
Becoming aware of poor leadership qualities can be a critical step as we strive to become better leaders and serve others as best as we can.
Many years ago, a manager I worked for displayed a mix of good and weak leadership qualities. On the positive side, he was knowledgeable of internal processes and supported many improvement projects in the business. He had good people skills and got along well with most of his team members.
On the negative side, he did not prioritise his day well. He tended to be unprepared during team updates or meetings, and was often disconnected from what his team members were working on. One thing that annoyed team members was he often played games like solitaire on his computer, while everyone else was under pressure trying to get things done on time.
If we want a life that’s rewarding and meaningful, we’ll have to do new things and take on new challenges so that we can have new experiences.
As we make progress towards things we want, it’s inevitable we’ll encounter obstacles along the way. A good thing about obstacles is that they can help us get a lot clearer on what we’re doing or what we’re trying to achieve.
The better we deal with obstacles, the quicker we’ll get to where we want to be.
The Different Kinds of Obstacles
- Internal — These can include our habitual way of thinking, our beliefs, behaviours or mindsets. Most times, once we overcome our internal obstacles, other obstacles tend to disappear.
- External — These can include other people, our environments, our geographical location or the economic climate we’re faced with.
The way we deal with our perceived internal and external obstacles will determine the quality of our results and how soon we achieve what we want.
As we get busier and busier and seemingly have more things to do, it’s becoming more difficult to stay focused and be productive.
We have more opportunities now that ever before, which is both a positive and negative. On the positive side, we have a better chance of creating the lifestyle we want by taking advantage of the opportunities available to us.
On the negative side, having more opportunities can make us indecisive, feel like we have more to do than we can handle, and also cause us to feel like we’re not making progress or taking advantage of the opportunities available to us.
Once our capacity to deal with things is reached, unless we have a strong mindset, we can easily become overwhelmed, stressed and not perform as well as we know we can.
What we want is the right balance between taking care of our priorities and taking advantage of the opportunities available to us without adding more stress to our lives.
It’s not a surprise that the better we start off our day in the mornings, the better our day will usually be.
If we start off our day rushing, becoming frustrated or not in a good mood, the rest of our day often tends to continue that way. Likewise, if we start off our day calm, composed and under control, we have a much higher chance of experiencing the same feelings during our day.
Therefore it makes a lot of sense to be intentional as to how we start off our day and pay closer attention to our morning routine. As we typically start off most of our days the same way, it’s intelligent to build in things that will increase our chances of being at our best and doing what we want to.
When I was in my twenties and had a full-time corporate career, each day tended to start off in a rush. As I used to commute between thirty to forty minutes each way to work, I always felt I was running late as I usually gave myself about thirty minutes to get ready, have some breakfast, make my lunch and then drive to work.
I also used to drive during peak periods so the amount of traffic on the road used to get me agitated and frustrated.
When you hear the word innovation, what’s the first thing that comes to your mind?
If you’re like me, you probably think of well-known companies or brands like Microsoft, Apple, Tesla, Samsung or Amazon, to name a few, who have large budgets to spend on innovation.
While these companies may be setting the benchmark for innovation in the world, we can use their successes to bring more innovation into our lives. Innovation should not be left to big businesses or brands only. We can all innovate at different levels in our lives.
What is Innovation?
I like to think of innovation as a bridge from what we currently have to what’s to come in the future. It’s about never settling for what’s already here, and continuously seeking to make things better.
As the saying goes, “Good, better, best… never let it rest, until the good is better, and the better is best.”
The companies that are leading in the twenty-first century are the ones that are continuously innovating. If we want to improve our lives consistently, then we must be willing to continuously innovate and take ourselves to higher and higher levels.
Everything we do in life is driven by our desire to experience certain emotions. At our core, we have a deep desire to be happy and feel positive emotions.
We go about acquiring those emotions in different ways. For some people, it may be having a successful career. For others, it may be being a great parent. For someone else, it may be doing charity or volunteer work.
As we go about our daily lives, it can be easy to lose our connection to the big picture about life. In the pursuit of what we believe will bring us happiness, we sometimes forget some simple or brutal truths about life.
We always need to keep sight of the important things in life and not let our busyness act as a mask for how we are living our lives.
For a long time, I believed that people resist change. Having learnt about and experienced dealing with change myself, there was some truth to that belief.
As I learned more about psychology and understanding people’s behaviours, I’ve now got a new perspective. One of my mentors teaches that people don’t necessarily resist change when it’s their choice.
What we resist is being changed. When we think about, we go through and deal with change daily. Consider some of the things we change daily.
- We change our clothes daily.
- We change what we eat most days.
- We change when and how we travel to places.
- We change our conversations daily.
- We change what we work on or do daily.
Going through change is not the issue. The real challenge is our association to change and what we tell ourselves about it.
There is a common misunderstanding that highly successful people only do things they want to do and the things they enjoy.
While doing only the things they enjoy may be the ideal scenario, the reality is they still have to do things they don’t necessary enjoy or want to, but have to.
Albert E. N. Gray, who wrote “The Common Denominator of Success,” said that successful people are successful because they form the habits of doing those things that failures don’t like to do.
Instead of focusing on what we don’t like about a particular task or activity, it’s more beneficial to turn it into a new habit so we don’t have to give a lot of conscious thought to it as we do it.
We all have things we’d prefer not to do and the longer we keep putting them off, the more likely we’ll start feeling overwhelmed, frustrated, unmotivated and unproductive.
The more things we can apply to make it easier for us to get these things done, the better state of mind we’ll be in and the better we’ll feel about ourselves.
The idea of automation isn’t anything new. Automation is an integral part of our lives and the more we use it, the easier it will make our lives.
What is Automation?
Automation is the use of systems to control processes, whereby reducing or eliminating the need for human intervention. Put simply, automation is having technology do things for us a lot quicker and easier, so we don’t have to do them ourselves.
From the time we wake up, automation via technology, plays an important part in our lives. A lot of activities in our homes are automated such as lighting, ventilation, heating, and home appliances such as washers, dryers and refrigeration.
In the business world, automation is often a key part of improvement and efficiency initiatives. These may include software programs and new equipment.
While there is always concern about having too much technology and the impact it will have on our overall lifestyle, it’s hard to argue automation does make our lives easier.
One of the key responsibilities of anyone in a leadership role is to ensure their team members are utilising their skills, strengths and abilities as best as they can.
When dealing with different personalities, a leader must be able to support people through difficult situations, which may include dealing with change, improving performance, and meeting deadlines or objectives.
Stress and anxiety is known to affect many people in the workplace. A study conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health in America revealed that around 18.1% of the US population suffered some form of anxiety at work, with 22.8% of those cases being classified as “severe.”
Stress is caused when we react to a current situation whereas anxiety is what we experience when we react to an imagined negative event in the future.
As leaders, we don’t want our team members to experience anxiety while they are working, and it’s up to us to be aware of the costs of dealing with anxiety and offer solutions to manage it.