How to develop leadership in 3 simple steps?
Analyse yourself: What kind of leader are you? (One who solves problems? A leader who helps people get along?) How do others see you as a leader? What are your goals, purposes and expectations?
Identify areas for improvement: Ask the following questions:
- Do I try to be aware of how others think and feel?
- Do I try to help others perform to the best of their abilities?
- Am I willing to accept responsibility?
- Am I willing to try new ideas and new ways of doing things?
- Am I able to communicate with others effectively?
- Am I a good problem solver?
- Do I accept and appreciate other perspectives and opinions?
- Am I aware of current issues and concerns in the team and football club?
Take Action: after analysing your strengths and weaknesses. If you answered no to any of the questions above, then the following strategies can assist you.
Communication: effective communication is dialogue. Barriers are created by speaking down to people, asking closed questions, using excessive authority and promoting a culture that everyone has to agree to. If your focus is on winning an argument, you will create fear of openness that will ultimately hinder progress.
- Listen actively: be genuinely interested in what others say. Don’t just ask a question for the sake of it. Take an interest in something personal to them.
- Thank people for their opinion: stress how much you value it, even if you don’t like it.
- Focus on the areas of agreement: reduce defensiveness by not jumping on areas of disagreement.
- Portray disagreements as simply a difference of opinion. Avoid the “I am right”. “You are wrong.”
Promote Enthusiasm and a Sense of Belonging:
- Friendliness: others will be more willing to share ideas if you’re interested in them as people.
- Understanding: everyone makes mistakes. Be constructive and tactful when offering advice.
- Fairness/Inclusiveness: provide equal treatment and equal opportunity for all team members.
- Integrity: show that you are more interested in group goals, rather than your own personal gain.
- Be aware of expectations: everyone expects something different eg recognition, social interaction or a chance to learn.
Get to know the people around you:
- Interact with group members as often as possible. The only way to get to know someone is through direct personal contact.
- Take note of each person’s qualities and characteristics.
- Treat people the way you like to be treated.
Accept Responsibility for getting things done:
- Take initiative: why stand around and wait for someone else to get things started. Set an example.
- Offer help and information: your knowledge and skills may be what is needed.
- Seek help and information: ask for advice. This encourages dialogue and will help you accomplish your goals.
- Make things happen: be decisive, energetic and enthusiastic.
- Know when and how to say no: if your time and resources are already committed turn down extra tasks. Don’t do things half hearted.
Problem Solve in a logical step-by-step way:
Whether you are faced with a decision to make or a conflict to resolve, the following procedure below will assist you:
- State the decision/problem as simply and clearly as possible.
- Gather all relevant information and resources.
- Brainstorm as many ideas or solutions as you can think off – involve others.
- Evaluate each idea or solution and choose the best one.
- Design a plan for using your idea or solution – include a timetable, assigned roles and resources.
- Reflect on your plan and identify what worked well and what could be done better in the future.
The skills that you acquire through any leadership role hold you in very good stead for later in life.
Two questions that you should ask yourself:
- How do you think you are perceived as a leader?
- How do you want to be perceived as a leader?
The beauty about leadership is that it can often be viewed as a blank canvas, in that you can paint your own picture with how you want to be remembered and perceived. It allows you and your leadership group to leave your mark on others.
Key ‘Leadership’ Tips:
- Work collaboratively. Seek advice if unsure about something (Team mates and coaches).
- Do not feel that you have to do everything on your own.
- Be pro-active (Don’t wait for things to happen, make things happen).
- Be a good listener (with ears, eyes and heart).
- Look for solutions rather than focus on the problems.
- Learn from your mistakes as this is very healthy for personal development.
- Positive role modelling – set the example for others to follow.
- Take risks!
- Action! Action! Action!
- Embrace: Leadership roles are a wonderful learning opportunity to be had as they provide you with skills that hold you in good stead in other areas of life.
- Have fun. Enjoy the opportunity