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Top 5 leadership skills and why they are so important for all organisations

16 September 2021

Leadership skills can either be learned or naturally occur in individuals with certain personality traits. In this blog post, we will look at the top five leadership skills you need to become a successful manager or director within your organisation.

Why are leadership skills important for organisations?

Having strong leadership skills within an organisation are so important in creating productive, successful teams. Many organisations believe that the best leaders are those who are very good workers, who know the organisation’s products, goals and procedures.

However, this does not prove that someone possesses the necessary leadership skills to mentor, motivate and direct colleagues in an effective way.

The most effective way in which all leaders can become successful is through training.

87% of employers said that ILM (Institute of Leadership and Management) training programmes positively impacted their business.

Top 5 Leadership Skills

There are multiple leadership skills individuals need to be successful leaders in the workplace. We’ve chosen the top five to create a great foundation for your first steps in becoming a strong leader.

1 – Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is not only about being self-aware but about having empathy too.

To be self-aware you must identify that your emotions affect those around you. You also need to recognise that your ego can sometimes stunt your progress as a leader. So, you will need to let this go in order to be aware of both your strengths and weaknesses.

Empathy on the other hand is how you put yourself in someone else’s shoes. This will inevitably help you deliver constructive criticism fairly and wisely, whilst also being approachable and a good listener when your team needs help in difficult situations.

Having these skills will make you more emotionally intelligent and in turn, you will gain trust and respect among your colleagues and teams.

2- Decisiveness

Decisiveness ultimately is the ability to make decisions quickly and confidently.

Having great research, problem-solving and planning skills, where you can use your own experiences to confidently make decisions, for the best results, can really help you improve business efficiency.

It’s also good to recognise that having knowledge of each department and how the department operates can really strengthen your decisiveness skills, giving you that background knowledge to proficiently lead.

Leadership courses are the best way to improve this background knowledge.

3 – Communication

Communication skills not only mean effectively speaking clearly to a team but also writing, listening and presenting in a clear and concise manner.  

This is such an important leadership skill to have when there are so many different communication forms. This could include team meetings, one-on-ones and companywide presentations.

All the while communicating through different workplace platforms such as phone, email, video meetings, chat, and social media. Plus, these conversations need to be constant with the employees and leaders in order to create a trustworthy open-door ethos within the organisation.

4 – Motivation

To be a successful leader you need to inspire employees.

You can do this through motivation. You need to learn how and what motivates each individual so that you can encourage them to be more productive and passionate about their work.

An effective way to motivate is to provide them with recognition, this improves their self-esteem allowing them to confidently undergo more work tasks. Or you could give employees more responsibilities to increase their overall personal asset to the company.

5 – Delegation

Taking on too many tasks is the downfall of many leaders. That’s why it is so important to delegate tasks around the team so that your time and skills are better utilised.

Leaders need to evaluate what their employee’s strengths and weaknesses are to match the right task to the right employee. Leaders must also trust their employees, to create a strong team environment.

In having this trust, you will gain mutual respect from your employees.

How can you develop these 5 leadership skills?

Mastering all five of these leadership skills; emotional intelligence, decisiveness, communication, motivation and delegation all help towards developing your own personal development and career. Evidently, you will need to practice this over time and understand your own leadership style to fully excel as a successful leader. Great ways in doing this are to learn from already strong leaders, gain a mentor or improve your skills with a leadership course.

Take a look at our leadership skills courses and begin your development today. https://www.salford.ac.uk/spd/leadership-and-management-courses