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Leadership skills - the 7 most important qualities for this position

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Leadership skills - the 7 most important qualities for this position

A career is hardly possible without leadership skills. Managers are expected to have special qualities that enable them to manage departments or entire divisions and lead employees.

Depending on the corporate strategy and corporate goals, combinations of competencies (soft skills) are necessary. Managers, project leaders, team leaders and other people working in a managerial position Executives need to have strong leadership qualities these days.

Specialist knowledge, school and academic education alone are not enough to take on the responsible task of leading a team or a business unit and making decisions on one's own responsibility. Leadership skills are not a quality we have by nature or learn at home. Here you can read about how to develop leadership skills, what is important and what you need to bear in mind.

Leadership Definition: What is it?

What are leadership competencies, can they be learned, and why do you need them? In the official definition of leadership competencies, certain skills that help, Assume responsibilityThe skills required to manage projects and lead employees are referred to as leadership competencies. But what leadership qualities are we talking about? What properties are necessary to become a good leader and, above all, what does leadership competence mean?

The most important leadership competence is the ability to motivate other people to perform and act in a way that Company goals be achieved. Leadership skills can help you achieve your professional plans and advance your career. Leadership skills include various characteristics that can be learned and trained.

Developing leadership skills in employees is often done in collaboration with supervisors. If you want to demonstrate your leadership skills, you can, for example, ask for additional tasks or complete further training.

When looking for qualified management personnel, employers make sure that the desired soft skills are present. Therefore, mention your leadership skills in your application, regardless of whether you are interested in an entry-level position or are seeking a promotion. Your leadership skills are part of your personal qualifications and can significantly increase your career opportunities.

leadership definition

What makes an effective leader: the 7 most important leadership competencies

What leadership skills are there? There are a variety of so-called soft skills that are useful and helpful in a leadership position. The seven leadership skills that every successful manager should have are:

  1. Communication skills
  2. Self-motivation
  3. Be able to delegate
  4. Analytical thinking
  5. Results oriented work
  6. Social competence
  7. Professionalism

The tasks of a manager include issuing instructions to employees, explaining facts and subsequently reviewing work processes. Communication skills is therefore one of the most important leadership competencies. Misunderstandings can be avoided by clear statements and disagreements in the team can be prevented by goal-oriented instructions.

As a supervisor, you should be perfectly adept at all forms of communication, communicating at the department level and with management in person, via phone or email, video or chat, and social media. Since a large part of communicating is listening to other people, you can active listening also be referred to as a leadership characteristic.

Soft skill self-motivation

Self-motivation is a soft skill that you need as a leader to convince your team of your ideas. If you want to spur your employees on to greater performance, you should be self-motivated. In difficult situations, the ability to self-motivate helps you to overcome a professional low more quickly.

Successful managers can distinguish between the important and the unimportant and have learned to prioritize tasks. delegate. A good Time Management is important to avoid piles of files on the desk and projects not being finished on time. 

Delegating is often mistakenly viewed as weakness. In reality, delegating tasks is evidence of a strong leader. Delegating work to your employees allows you to focus on important tasks yourself.

Leadership competence analytical thinking

As a leadership competence analytic thinking regularly called for in job advertisements for managers. A precise, structured way of thinking and acting helps in dealing with everyday problems that exist in every company, as well as in dealing with challenges. Managers often find themselves in situations where it is not easy to find solutions. If you want to work in a results-oriented manner and lead a team, you have to think analytically, have clear goals and know how to achieve them.

The social competence allows conclusions to be drawn about leadership behavior and is one of the most important leadership competencies. In a working atmosphere characterized by mutual respect and trust, employees feel comfortable at work and will turn to their superiors with their questions and concerns. Social competence also means conveying credibility and reliability. Praise and recognition are a sign of appreciation.

Openness and honesty

Everyone makes mistakes. Mishaps and mistakes happen to employees just as they do to managers. The ability to apologize should therefore also be a matter of course for managers. With openness and honesty, you encourage the same behavior in your employees.

A competent manager is characterized by Professionalism out. As a decision maker, you are confronted with a number of problems every day. You have to make decisionswhich may turn out to be wrong or unsuitable in retrospect. Professional action also includes unconventional solutions. Learn to look at problems from multiple perspectives and approach challenges in unconventional ways.

leadership competence examples

Listen carefully

Crisis situations show whether someone is working professionally. If a member of your team asks you for help, you can decline assistance and point out your coworker's professional obligations. The better option, however, is to listen carefully to understand the problem, reassign the task or extend the deadline.

Professional behavior at work is recognized by the way it responds to unpredictable events or disagreements. Objectivity is considered professional, while impulsive behavior is considered unprofessional.

Professionalism has nothing to do with years of professional experience. The ability to work professionally, one of the most important leadership skills, can be learned and developed further and further.

20 examples of modern leadership skills

The term modern leadership competencies suggests that there are leadership traits that were once helpful but are now obsolete or no longer desired. In fact, there are different types of leadership competencies. While the Leadership style From traditional authoritarian leadership to a modern, cooperative style of employee management, the demands on leadership behavior also changed.

Modern leadership competencies relate to emotional intelligence. Instead of one-dimensional skills, broad-based leadership competencies are desired. New leadership styles should ensure more growth. By involving employees comprehensively, changes in the company can be actively shaped.

The digital age has greatly changed everyday working life. The need for managers with modern leadership skills is also increasing due to the innovative ways of working in a world characterized by increasing globalization. The development of leadership competencies at work is oriented to the new reality.

The top 20 leadership examples are:

  1. Agile management style
  2. Empowerment instead of classic conservative management
  3. Fairness and respect
  4. Courage and pioneering spirit
  5. Ability to self-criticism
  6. Innovation competence
  7. Flexibility in time and space
  8. Resilience
  9. Proactive thinking and acting
  10. Digital Leadership
  11. Enthusiasm
  12. Problem solving skills
  13. Potential Recognize from employees
  14. Intercultural competence
  15. Conflict skills
  16. Reflective conflict behavior
  17. Positive risk appetite
  18. Rapid decision making
  19. Creativity
  20. Appreciative management
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How can I develop leadership skills?

Do you want to make a career? Do you want to manage a department, lead a team and take responsibility for projects? Leadership skills help you to fulfill your responsibilities and realize your career aspirations. The development of leadership skills begins with self-reflection.

Read through the 20 examples of modern leadership skills in the previous chapter again. Can you motivate yourself even when everything is going haywire in the office? What about your critical faculties? Are you able to refute unreasonable accusations with logical arguments and remain objective?

Leadership skills can be learned! Have you worked in a team so far and are you aiming for a managerial position in the company? Then it is important to develop your skills in a targeted manner in order to convince your superiors of your leadership skills.

Discipline and self-control

To lead competently means first of all to lead oneself. That sounds simple, but it can be quite a challenge. The magic words of self-management (also called self-leadership) are called self-discipline and self-control.

Good organization is another prerequisite that will pave your way to the executive suite. Organize your own day-to-day work effectively and develop an efficient Time management. Only when you are able to delegate and coordinate tasks can both your employer and your employees benefit from your organizational skills.

Question your behaviors when communicating with supervisors and colleagues, giving instructions, making suggestions, and discussing a wide variety of topics. The Communication skills is one of the most important leadership skills. Clear, concrete statements protect you from misunderstandings.

Leadership competence also includes conflict management

Problems in the workplace cannot be avoided even with a modern, friendly management style. Basically, disagreements can occur at any time, even if you have organized everything perfectly and don't expect them. To avoid tangible conflicts, it is important to train conflict management.

Expect that your employees will turn to you with confidence when they have difficulties on the job. As a manager, you are both a mediator and a facilitator. Your task is to remain neutral and assess things objectively. Demonstrate problem-solving strategies and work with your team to find constructive solutions that help everyone involved.

Constructive feedback proves your leadership competence

Consider the development of leadership skills in the workplace as preparation for your future role as a team leader, project leader or manager. Constructive feedback from you to your employees demonstrates your leadership skills. In return, you should also be able to deal with constructive criticism.

Create a positive work environment, reward your employees for good performance by praising them and expressing your appreciation. Good leaders are characterized by their social skills. Social skills are also part of modern leadership skills and can make everyday work life more relaxed and enjoyable.

As a supervisor, you have a role model function in interpersonal interaction. Whether you are suitable as a leader depends on your social competence. Analyze your social characteristics, find out whether there are any deficits and whether you need to change your behavior.

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Business coaching: How coaching can impact your career as a leader

Your career as a manager will be easier and more straightforward if you have all the necessary leadership skills. At every stage of your professional and personal development, you will face specific challenges that need to be mastered.

Business coaching helps to improve your Identify strengths and weaknesses, communicate better and make the corporate culture more positive. In our free workbook we have 10 Business Coaching Tips for Your Career that will help you achieve your career goals faster. But also to develop the potential of your employees, to prevent burn-outs and bore-outs and to stay in the flow.

In business coaching you will also learn how important good conflict management is for employee satisfaction, what you can do to motivate your team and why managers often need a healthy assertiveness.

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Reviewed by Dr. med. Stefan Frädrich

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