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10 Ways To A Magnetic Leadership Style

10 Ways To A Magnetic Leadership Style

Leaders are not always born.  Strong leadership abilities come from the right amount of people skills and bold action.  To go beyond traditional leadership, you have to be willing to step away from the computer screen and be seen.

The greatest leaders know their product, clients, customers, and supporters.  They make their supporters feel like they care, and sometimes they actually do.  If you want to make your leadership shine, have others trust you, and follow you, you need to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.  Here are 10 ways to do it.

1. Play with transparency.

Be open about any losses, gains, and what you are working on. Creating an environment built on too many secrets generates fear and rumors.  If there’s a problem, share it with your team and let them see that you don’t always have the answer.  This can be scary for someone who is always in control, but often the reverse happens, and you’ll gain more respect.

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2. Make them think it’s their idea.

People like to own stuff.  They don’t want to feel like they are working hard to make you richer, and smarter.  To increase your influence as a leader, make sure others have a stake in whatever they are working on.  Invite them to set the rules, parameters, the ins/outs, and you provide the space and creative freedom.  If you surround yourself with entrepreneurial-minded team members, you’ll find yourself doing less micro-management and more guidance.

3. Learn to ask the right questions.

Sometimes you won’t have the answers.  You don’t have to.  You can simply answer a question with a question.  The person will give you more information which will allow you to move forward.  Don’t ever come off as a know-it-all leader.  Keep others on their toes.  When you ask the right questions, you give yourself more time to think and respond proactively while letting others figure it out for you.

4. Stop looking busy and do something.

Get rid of the busy work.  A powerful leader is someone who looks good, has good habits, and is socially sophisticated.  Let others see you exhibiting the ideals you advocate; get active in your community, or join a local sports club or book club.

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5. Reward others often with really good perks.

Surprise your team with anything from a fully paid weekend excursion to bonuses.  Your supporters will want to work harder because there is an end-goal, and it isn’t just Friday or the weekend.  They actually get to see the value of the work they deliver.  The bigger the work, the bigger the rewards they should enjoy.

6. Practice shutting your mouth.

Many leaders are comfortable at the podium, speaking to a large group, and talking with their hands.  This animated version is not always necessary.  Learning to listen is probably the most powerful form of communication. If you learn to listen to what others are not saying, you will be able to give them what they don’t know they want. This can lead to your next mega idea or product.

7. Be a philanthropist or act like one.

This is one of the easiest, but most costly ways to increase your visibility and shine as a leader.  Is there a cause you are passionate about? If you can’t find one, start one.  Find a nonprofit you believe in, pump your resources into it, get on the Board, and make a difference in the lives of people you don’t know.  Philanthropy is a powerful way to help others, while you get exposure for good work.

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8. Learn to surprise others and keep them interested.

To keep the interest of those you support, a leader must learn how to stay in control.  It’s easy to get stuck in default mode and be predictable.  A team needs to know that they are following someone who is capable of anything, fearless and unafraid to take the road less traveled.

9. Spend time with the right people.

A leader doesn’t have a lot of time.  Find the relationships that matter most for your professional goals.  Cultivate them with meaningful correspondence, face-to-face meetings, and informal niceties.  Find out how you can help your contacts before they can help you.

10. Increase your value and you will be indispensable.

Develop a new idea, product or strategy that you can teach others.  Make sure it is your own successfully proven technique.  Share it generously with a chosen few to solidify your position as the source of this great new idea.  It will be difficult to replace you. Others will come to you to learn, which will increase their confidence and lead them to become your evangelists.

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Featured photo credit: photopin via

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Last Updated on July 8, 2020

How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

How to Prevent Decision Fatigue From Clouding Your Judgement

What is decision fatigue? Let me explain this with an example:

When determining a court ruling, there are many factors that contribute to their final verdict. You probably assume that the judge’s decision is influenced solely by the nature of the crime committed or the particular laws that were broken. While this is completely valid, there is an even greater influential factor that dictates the judge’s decision: the time of day.

In 2012, a research team from Columbia University[1] examined 1,112 court rulings set in place by a Parole Board Judge over a 10 month period. The judge would have to determine whether the individuals in question would be released from prison on parole, or a change in the parole terms.

While the facts of the case often take precedence in decision making, the judges mental state had an alarming influence on their verdict.

As the day goes on, the chance of a favorable ruling drops:

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    Image source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

    Does the time of day, or the judges level of hunger really contribute that greatly to their decision making? Yes, it does.

    The research went on to show that at the start of the day the likelihood of the judging giving out a favorable ruling was somewhere around 65%.

    But as the morning dragged on, the judge became fatigued and drained from making decision after decision. As more time went on, the odds of receiving a favorable ruling decreased steadily until it was whittled down to zero.

    However, right after their lunch break, the judge would return to the courtroom feeling refreshed and recharged. Energized by their second wind, their leniency skyrockets back up to a whopping 65%. And again, as the day drags on to its finish, the favorable rulings slowly diminish along with the judge’s spirits.

    This is no coincidence. According to the carefully recorded research, this was true for all 1,112 cases. The severity of the crime didn’t matter. Whether it was rape, murder, theft, or embezzlement, the criminal was more likely to get a favorable ruling either early in the morning, or after the judges lunch break.

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    Are You Suffering from Decision Fatigue Too?

    We all suffer from decision fatigue without even realizing it.

    Perhaps you aren’t a judge with the fate of an individual’s life at your disposal, but the daily decisions you make for yourself could hinder you if you’re not in the right head-space.

    Regardless of how energetic you feel (as I imagine it is somehow caffeine induced anyway), you will still experience decision fatigue. Just like every other muscle, your brain gets tired after periods of overuse, pumping out one decision after the next. It needs a chance to rest in order to function at a productive rate.

    The Detrimental Consequences of Decision Fatigue

    When you are in a position such as a Judge, you can’t afford to let your mental state dictate your decision making; but it still does. According to George Lowenstein, an American educator and economy expert, decision fatigue is to blame for poor decision making among members of high office. The disastrous level of failure among these individuals to control their impulses could be directly related to their day to day stresses at work and their private life.

    When you’re just too tired to think, you stop caring. And once you get careless, that’s when you need to worry. Decision fatigue can contribute to a number of issues such as impulse shopping (guilty), poor decision making at work, and poor decision making with after work relationships. You know what I’m talking about. Don’t dip your pen in the company ink.

    How to Make Decision Effectively

    Either alter the time of decision making to when your mind is the most fresh, or limit the number of decisions to be made. Try utilizing the following hacks for more effective decision making.

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    1. Make Your Most Important Decisions within the First 3 Hours

    You want to make decisions at your peak performance, so either first thing in the morning, or right after a break.

    Research has actually shown that you are the most productive for the first 3 hours[2] of your day. Utilize this time! Don’t waste it on trivial decisions such as what to wear, or mindlessly scrolling through social media.

    Instead, use this time to tweak your game plan. What do you want to accomplish? What can you improve? What steps do you need to take to reach these goals?

    2. Form Habits to Reduce Decision Making

    You don’t have to choose all the time.

    Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but it doesn’t have to be an extravagant spread every morning. Make a habit out of eating a similar or quick breakfast, and cut that step of your morning out of the way. Can’t decide what to wear? Pick the first thing that catches your eye. We both know that after 20 minutes of changing outfits you’ll just go with the first thing anyway.

    Powerful individuals such as Steve Jobs, Barack Obama, and Mark Zuckerberg don’t waste their precious time deciding what to wear. In fact, they have been known to limiting their outfits down to two options in order to reduce their daily decision making.

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    3. Take Frequent Breaks for a Clearer Mind

    You are at your peak of productivity after a break, so to reap the benefits, you need to take lots of breaks! I know, what a sacrifice. If judges make better decisions in the morning and after their lunch break, then so will you.

    The reason for this is because the belly is now full, and the hunger is gone. Roy Baumeister, Florida State University social psychologist[3] had found that low-glucose levels take a negative toll on decision making. By taking a break to replenish your glucose levels, you will be able to focus better and improve your decision making abilities.

    Even if you aren’t hungry, little breaks are still necessary to let your mind refresh, and come back being able to think more clearly.

    Structure your break times. Decide beforehand when you will take breaks, and eat energy sustaining snacks so that your energy level doesn’t drop too low. The time you “lose” during your breaks will be made up in the end, as your productivity will increase after each break.

    So instead of slogging through your day, letting your mind deteriorate and fall victim to the daily abuses of decision making, take a break, eat a snack. Let your mind refresh and reset, and jump-start your productivity throughout the day.

    More Tips About Decision Making

    Featured photo credit: Kelly Sikkema via unsplash.com

    Reference

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