Leadership soft skills: What are the leadership soft skills that create great employees and successful companies. How can you develop these skills?
The most successful leaders not only develop technical skills; they also develop powerful leadership soft skills.
15 Leadership Soft Skills that Create Greatness
“That some achieve great success is proof to all that others can achieve it as well.” ~ Abraham Lincoln
There are countless leadership qualities that lead to success. Throughout my career as a recruiter, I have made notes on leaders I admire. These leaders have these soft skills.
1. Confidence During Periods of Uncertainty
The ability to build trust is the single most important leadership soft skill. Furthermore, without trust, morale fails, engagement and commitment fail, and turnover rises.
Maintaining confidence in periods of uncertainty takes personal courage. Furthermore, leaders must focus on their mental and emotional balance to restore their own confidence in periods of uncertainty. This leadership soft skill takes maintenance as well as continued growth.
2. Integrity that Creates Trust
Without Integrity, leadership fails. Relationships fail. For example, integrity in water tightness keeps ships afloat. Structural integrity in a bridge is makes bridges safe to cross. Personal integrity among the people in an organization builds trust in working for an organization.
Furthermore, ensuring integrity takes honest appraisal. In the case of structures, it takes regular inspections. In the case of an organization, integrity is part of regular reviews.
3. Skills to Create Greatness in Others
Leadership is not about creating personal greatness. What good is a leader if that leader can’t create greatness in the members of the team? A lack of this ability to create greatness in the others undermines the long-term future of an organization.
4. Command Skills to Lead
There are many ways people can take over a group. Charisma, boldness, persuasiveness, dominance are just three characteristics that people use to take command. However, without commands skills, leaders cannot exert control.
With command skills, the actor can become the director. Likewise, the secretary can become the office manager. The vice president can become the CEO.
Command skills are leadership soft skills you can develop.
5. Enthusiasm to Inspire Energy in Others
Being around people without enthusiasm can turn optimism drain the energy from the entire team. On the other hand, people with enthusiasm can create energy in the people without them. Sometimes somethings as a smile can inspire energy in others.
6. Ability to Walk the Talk
Insisting that workers arrive on time while the leader is unpredictable about the time they arrive to work creates resentment in the workplace.
Furthermore, any instance where leaders don’t follow the rules harms employee morale and trust.
7. Realistic Optimism to Accept Change and Avoid Costly Mistakes
Being optimistic about the direction of an organization is important to motivating employees. However, not being realistic about a failed project wastes time and money. People who are unrealistic about the need to change are like people swimming out to sea. If they have optimism, but keep the right perspective of the practicality of an idea or a project, their realistic optimism gives them perspective on what will work and what will not work.
9. Open-mindedness to Listen to Others
Some leaders just can’t listen. They don’t understand the proverb that two heads are better than on. In so doing, they do not gain the collective wisdom of the team. The best leaders hire people who can expand the intelligence of the company. Furthermore, these leaders listen to people who can make the company smarter.
10. Stamina to Endure Extended Periods of Demanding Work
For some people, stamina seems to come naturally, especially for young people. However, people who do healthy things can increase their stamina. These people reduce or cut alcohol and tobacco from their lives. The eat foods that help them store energy. They exercise.
Furthermore, they take breaks to rest to restore cover their energy.
11. Instincts to Know When to Trust Their Inner Voice
This inner voice exists in most people. Additionally, learning to listen is a skill most people can develop. Many top level executive (Steve Jobs and Tim Cook included) have said that their inner voice guides them through decision making better than analytical thinking. They can make bolder steps and continue to have confidence when they have listened to their inner voice.
12. Emotional and Mental Maturity to Keep Perspective
“The sky is falling” mentality is dangerous. This mentality of thinking of is the theme in the famous children’s folk story, “Chicken Little.”
There are many versions of the story. According to one version of this folk story, a nut falls on Chicken Little’s head. The chick becomes hysterical and goes on a quest to alert others and gather followers on his trip to notify the king. In this version, a fox joins the group, leads them to his den, and eats them.
Hysteria leads to panic. From there, panic incinerates the clear thinking to handle problems in perspective.
13. Courage to Speak Out
The captain might become disturbed to know that the ship is leaking. Having to disturb the captain, especially an intimidating captain, takes courage. However, the consequences of not telling the captain that the ship is leading has catastrophic consequences.
14. Humility to Give Credit to Others.
Having to work for leaders who selfishly takes credit for everyone’s work becomes quickly annoying, even demoralizing.
In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins discusses the results of studying 1,435 good companies. From those companies, Mr. Collins and his team of researchers selected 11 companies that had gone from Good to Great over a 40 year-year period.
In the end, Jim Collins and his team of researchers found that humility is critical for successful leadership.
15. Flexibility to Work with Others
People who can’t work with other people have no value as a leader. Some people play important roles in a company without working with others. However, these people can’t lead teams.