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12 Signs That You’re A Remarkably Good Leader

12 Signs That You’re A Remarkably Good Leader

A lot of people get trapped in the idea that they are nothing more than ordinary. Salary men, simple teachers, students, office workers and many may feel like their professions or lack of a fancy title may mean they are meant to be a follower.

They couldn’t be more wrong. Leadership comes in many shapes and sizes, its qualities are subtle. Here are twelve signs that show you’re not only a leader, but a remarkably good leader:

1. You lead when you are needed to.

We’ve all met assertive go-getters who feel the need to be in charge no matter the task at hand. Whether it’s a group project, following an itinerary, or even just a brainstorming session, these people need to be in charge and they will make sure everyone knows it. Always being in charge, however, doesn’t translate to good leadership. Good leaders know their areas of expertise–they work for the good of the project and not themselves. They know when to stand aside and hand over the baton.

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2. You lead for a cause, not a promotion.

While it’s important to have ambition, a remarkably good leader dedicates their energies first to the cause, then to the team and lastly to him or herself. Leadership often comes with power, but that’s not its defining characteristic. If you take on a project hoping to reap only self-benefit, it will show in its outcome and be reflected on the morale of your team.

3. You break the rules.

Leadership is about redefining things, finding new solutions and leading others to bigger and better things. Remarkably good leaders don’t stay in a single place and carry out their activities outside the box. Leadership is about bringing progress and provoking evolution, and none of this can be done from inside the margins of the status quo.

4. You speak out.

Do you spot a double standard? Did you witness an injustice? Remarkably good leaders speak up in the face of adversity and stand up for what is right, not what is popular. Standing up for those who can’t and taking a stand to help others is an important characteristic of a leader.

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5. You know your team.

Imagine taking the wheel on a project but having no idea of who you are working with or what their strengths are. Now imagine working on a project and having the person in charge never call you by name, or worse, call you by the wrong name. Remarkably good leaders know everything they need to know about each and every member of their team, they are personable and always have their preferences in mind when delegating duties.

6. You appoint the right people to the right post.

What good is it to know your team and their abilities if you don’t take advantage of them? Remarkably good leaders don’t just know what their team is about, they know how to best delegate their strengths and weaknesses to get results.

7. You give credit where it’s due.

Once a goal is reached, it’s easy for others to place credit on the team leader. Bad leaders reap in the spotlight and are ready to take credit for the end results. Meanwhile, a remarkably good leader never fails to highlight others’ individual work. Using “we” when speaking of triumphs goes a long way. True leaders know they are nothing without the people around them and they are not afraid of showing it.

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8. You are extremely accountable.

Everybody makes mistakes and remarkably good leaders are not an exception. Failures more than successes separate the good from the bad, given that the latter searches for someone to blame instead of taking responsibility. Great leaders often speak of failures in terms of “I” and take responsibility for their team. Remarkably good leaders are not fazed by periods of failures — at least they have a good team to get through it with.

9. You trust your intuition.

When leading a team into uncharted territory, remarkably good leaders trust themselves to make sound decisions. They draw from past experiences or ask for help from mentors or experienced members of their field. Fear of the unknown doesn’t hold them back because they believe in themselves and their team.

10. Your positivity is contagious.

No matter the situation, remarkably good leaders keep their spirits high. They take failures gracefully and successes do not go to their heads. They keep an appropriate sense of humor, show humility, and more than team members, they have friends. Remarkable leaders generate enthusiasm for the work they do, their positivity is contagious and it shows on the quality of their team’s job.

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11. You are a good listener.

Remarkably good leaders don’t want to rule their team, they want to work together. This mans they are open to listening to new ideas or projects and are not afraid of seeking advice and learning from others. Most importantly, remarkably good leaders also listen to criticism and don’t become defensive or upset when a team member or client voices a concern or points out an inconsistency or mistake.

12. You inspire others to change.

Remarkably good leaders know the difference between dictating and leading. Dictating involves scaring team members into getting results. Leading involves inspiring people to give the best they have to achieve said results. Remarkably good leaders inspire their team members to become the best version of themselves that they can be. They build solid foundations, and are not afraid of sharing knowledge. If you are always searching for ways to make the people around you grow, they will be inspired to do so and their work will reflect how proud they are to be part of your team.

Using these twelve signs you can become a remarkably good leader.

Featured photo credit: Flickr via flickr.com

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Joel Goldstein

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

How to Be Happy at Work and Find Fulfillment in Your Career

How to Be Happy at Work and Find Fulfillment in Your Career

If you’re going to spend 1/3 of our life at work, you should enjoy it, right?

Trust me, I know that’s easier said than done. Difficult coworkers, less-than-desirable tasks, or even just being in the wrong position can all lead to a lack of enjoyment and fulfillment in your work.

But what if I told you it doesn’t have to be this way? Or better yet, if you struggle with all of the above (and then some), what if I told you that enjoying your work and finding fulfillment regardless of those obstacles is possible?

Don’t believe me? I don’t blame you because I was there too. Before implementing the tips below, I struggled to get through each day, much less find real fulfillment, in the office. Now, even after the toughest days on the job, I still come away with feelings of pride, accomplishment, and fulfillment. The best news is, so can you.

If you’re ready to make those hours count and find happiness and fulfillment in the office, then read on to find out how to be happy at work and find fulfillment in your career:

1. Discover the root(s) of the problem

For this first step, we’ll need to think back to 8th-grade physics (humor me). We all know Newton’s 3rd law, “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” When you think about it, the same can be said outside of physics, and we see this law play out in our daily lives, day after day.

Simply put, all the issues we deal with in the office (and life in general) affect us in a noticeable way.

If you’re appreciated at work, like the work you do and receive frequent praise, promotions, or raises, then this will probably have an altogether positive effect on your life in the office.

But what if we reverse this? What if you feel under appreciated, get passed up for promotions, or get denied raises? This is sure to affect the way you feel at work on a negative level.

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So, before you can implement the steps of feeling happy and fulfilled at work, we first have to discover the reasons why you don’t feel that way already.

Think about it, write a list, or make a mental note. Run through all the reasons you’re dissatisfied in the office, and don’t hold back. Knowing the exact obstacles you’re facing will make overcoming them that much easier.

In fact, as a side-challenge to this article, I recommend picking the top three reasons contributing to your dissatisfaction at work and using the following tips to tackle them.

2. Practice gratitude for an instant uplift

Did you know the simple act of feeling grateful can increase your happiness and make you more fulfilled at work?[1]

Well, it’s true, and it’s scientifically proven.

Dr. Lisa Firestone notes that practicing gratitude “reminds us of what we lacked in the past.” Meaning, it serves as both a boost to happiness and a bit of a wake-up call that things have been or could be, much worse.

Trying to conjure up feelings of gratitude can seem almost impossible when your work situation seems bleak, but hear me out: There are incredibly easy ways to get started and it doesn’t involve trying to “force” yourself to feel grateful about things that stress you out.

For an instant pick-me-up, try this:

Find a loose piece of paper, a blank sticky note, or anything you can write on, be it physical or digital. List just three things that you are absolutely without-a-doubt thankful for in your life.

Now here’s the trick: Don’t just list what you’re grateful for, you have to list why you’re grateful for them, too.

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For example, simply saying “I’m grateful for my kids” will probably make you feel good, sure, but what if we could amplify the warm, fuzzy feeling into real, lasting motivation?

Instead, write the reason you’re so thankful for your children. Is it because they make you laugh and forget about other stressors? Or maybe they help to remind you of why you go to work every day in the first place?

Whatever your reasons may be, jot them down and keep your list somewhere you can see it while you work. A quick glance at your gratitude list throughout the day can provide powerful, positive motivation to keep going.

Bonus:

If you can find just three things to be thankful for that specifically relate to your job, and list why those things make you grateful, your list can also help you find fulfillment in your work itself which can give you an even bigger boost of positivity throughout the day.

3. Take meaningful time for yourself

We all know creating a strong work-life balance can be crucial to feeling satisfied in our jobs, but rarely do we ever address how we’re spending our time outside of work.

Many of us survive a 9-hour work day and commute home only to find ourselves busy with our personal to-do lists, running a household, and taking care of a child (or 2 or 3, and so on).

If you spend all your time working, whether in the office or within your household, you’re going to feel drained at some point. This is why setting meaningful time for yourself every day is highly important.

Look, I get it: I don’t know anyone in the working world who can shun all responsibility for a 3-movie marathon or happy hour with friends whenever they feel like it. But finding time for yourself, be it just 30 minutes to an hour, can really make a difference in how you feel at work.

This works because you’ll have time to actually relax and let the day’s stress melt away while you enjoy something just for you. The to-do lists and stressors will still be there after you’re refreshed and ready to tackle them.

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No time for me-time? Try this:

If you have a busy household, you’ll need to capitalize on a block of time you know will be completely uninterrupted. The easiest way to do this: try waking up 30 minutes to an hour earlier than usual (or push bedtime back an hour if you’re a night owl, like me) and take time to do something you enjoy.

This could be reading with a cup of tea, catching up on Facebook, spending time on a passion project—anything! As long as it’s meaningful to you, it works!

Bonus:

Starting your day with meaningful time for yourself can set you up to have a positive mood that lasts well into office hours, and having your me-time in the evening can give you something positive to look forward to during the day.

4. Get productive and feel accomplished

Don’t you just love the feeling of checking the last item off of a hefty to-do list? That’s because self-motivation can be a huge driver of positivity and success.

When we accomplish something, no matter how small, it makes us feel good, plain and simple. Applying this tactic to your daily work can be the motivator you need to find fulfillment during the daily office grind.

While there are tons of steps to get more done at work, I’ll share my personal favorite: Prioritizing.

Now, many people handle prioritizing differently. Some like to tackle the little tasks first so they can spend focused time on the big to-dos. Others like to knock out the big items first and get to the smaller ones when they can.

No matter which camp you’re in, you may be missing one crucial step: Time management.

So how’s this work? When you factor in the amount of time your priorities will take, it can transform your productivity ten-fold.

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Say you have three top priorities for the day. You might jump into the smaller ones or the bigger ones depending on your preferred method, and then find yourself out of time and bringing work home with you at the end of the day.

This is prevented when you factor in time. Knowing how long each item will take, or deliberately setting specific blocks of time for your priorities can help you accomplish more in the same 8-9 (or 12) hours that you typically spend at work.

Try this:

Take a look at your priorities and consider how long they should take. Pop into your Google calendar (or Filofax, whatever works for you) and schedule time to work on your priority items around any important meetings or events of the day.

The most important thing to remember is to stick to your dedicated time.

Often, when we know exactly how long we have to work on something (and honor this time limit), we’re motivated to get more done on time to avoid taking work home at the end of the day.

The bottom line

There’s no need to waste 1/3 of our lives feeling unsatisfied at work. Luckily, you now have the tools to get started, take back your time, and become happy and fulfilled at work again.

The only question is — which tip will you try first?

Featured photo credit: Ellyot via unsplash.com

Reference

[1]Psychology Today: The Healing Power of Gratitude

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