One of the greatest ways to make your business joyful and fun, to stand out from the crowd, and to become wildly successful is to be you. – Simone Milasas (Joy of Business)
Have you ever wondered about your personal style of doing business? Have you thought about what being a leader means to you and how to portray that in the world? What if the key to successful leadership is simply to be yourself and trust your instincts, insights and awareness?
Here are five tools to help you lead effectively, just by being ‘yourself’.
1. Be interested, not interesting
The better someone feels at work, the more engaged and productive they will usually be. So, what if being a true leader involves the willingness to take into account the people you work with?
Most people are not used to having someone around who truly listens to them. Are you currently asking your staff questions about them, or do you only talk about work?
People love to talk about themselves, and are more likely to be interested in you when you are interested in them. What if you as a leader were the person who listened to everyone first, instead of talking about yourself? Create time for your employees; ask questions, find out what is happening in their lives and take the time to listen.
2. What can this person/group hear?
When you speak, are you taking into account what your audience is willing and able to hear, or are you simply trying to get your point across? As a leader you want to get everybody motivated, define your target and create a team that is engaged with the business. But usually everybody has their own way of getting things done and a point of view of their own. Because of this, most people don’t really care what you think – they have their own thoughts!
As a leader who takes their team into account, you always want to speak with an awarenes of what people can hear (ie what they will accept, or listen to), rather than just trying to get your point across. Strikingly, you will have an unconsious awareness of what people are willing to hear so, before you speak, ask yourself, What can this person/group hear? You may be surprised at the difference in your language and delivery, as you intuitively begin to communicate what can be heard. This simple trick will dynamically affect your business.
3. What does this person/group require me to be?
Are you willing to be whatever someone needs you to be? It’s interesting that some people require a leader to tell them exactly what they need to do and some hate it when they get told what to do. Some like it when you ask their opinion; some don’t. Some groups require some bossiness and direction, some require more friendship and a lighter touch.
So what is that that people require you to be? Once again, you can trust your instincts to guide you in this. Just by asking that question, What does this person/group require me to be?, you will start getting a sense of what the person or group requires from you.
4. Who are you as a leader?
What if there is no right way of being a leader? What if the most effective leadership style is to be wholly authentic?
Did your parents call you shy, or tell you not to be bossy, to be a good girl, or to behave ‘properly’ as a child? Your ability to lead, now, is limited by all the stories that you took on and believed about yourself from when you were young, through adulthood. To be a truly effective leader, are you willing to give up every story you have been told about you? What if you can choose to be everything: shy, bossy, the good girl, a strict leader, a femme fatale … and make the choice to be what will work best, according to moment/situation you’re in and the person/group you’re dealing with?
Importantly, what if you could have no preconcieved ideas about what it means to be a leader? The more you are willing to be anything and everything as a leader, the more effortless it will be to take the lead in any situation, in whatever way is required of you.
5. Are you ready to stand on your own?
Are you willing to stand alone and be a different kind of leader? A leader is someone who recognises future possibilities, even if nobody else is able or willing to see them yet. In fact, there may be occasions when you might not even have the words to explain it yourself; and yet, you just know.
As a leader you must be willing to stand on your own, since you will often be aware of what’s best for the business, and of what’s possible, long before others can perceive these factors.
When you have an instinctive understanding of what is best for your business, it is common to try to convince others that you are right – to get others on the same page as yourself – or to give in to others’ ideas of what is possible, and dismiss your own leadership instincts. But what if there is another way?
Be willing to ask yourself, as a leader, What do I know about this? What do I know are the possibilities?, If I was totally being me here, what would I say or do?, and you will remain attuned to both your authenticity, and your natural instincts. Then, ask, What can this people/group hear? What do they require me to be? In doing so, you will instinctively communicate what you truly mean, in a way in which your audience can receive it. Remember to remain interested in other people, and be aware of the needs of others in your environment. In these ways, you can discover what truly effective leadership is, in business.
Yasodhara Romero Fernandes is a professional performer, vocal coach, performance and communications expert and certified Right Voice for You facilitator. She completed her Master of Performing Arts and Composition at ARTEZ in Netherlands and has spent a decade touring as a professional performer throughout Europe, Asia and the USA. As a Right Voice for You certified facilitator, a special program by Access Consciousness, Yasodhara conducts classes and private consultations around the world, helping people open up to the power of authentic communication and authentic living. https://www.houseofpossibilities.net/