The Expectations of Great Leadership

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Great leaders above all need a keen sense of awareness. Awareness of their strengths and the strengths of their team members and how to leverage those strengths to get where they want to go and meet great leadership expectations. To produce long-lasting results, all leaders need a fresh look at the behaviors that actually contribute to performance, development, and success. Among these is being able to do seven things really well.

Leadership Expectations

  1. Build relationships
  2. Develop people
  3. Lead change
  4. Inspire others
  5. Think critically
  6. Communicate clearly
  7. Create accountability
  8. Leadership expectations

What are leadership expectations?

When it comes to leadership, we all have certain expectations. We want our leaders to be able to guide and inspire us, to set a clear vision for the future, and to make tough decisions when necessary. But being a good leader takes more than just having a list of qualities; it requires a certain level of skill and experience. A truly effective leader knows how to balance strategy with empathy, how to motivate others while staying grounded in reality, and how to take responsibility for both successes and failures. So whether you’re a seasoned executive or a new manager, remember that leadership expectations are high – but with hard work, dedication, and a willingness to learn, you can rise to the challenge and become the kind of leader that people respect and admire.

What are the 3 needs in leadership?

Leadership is an essential element in any organization, but what does it truly take to be an effective leader? Well, there are three fundamental needs that every successful leader should possess.

  • Firstly, leaders should have a clear vision and direction for their team, as it plays a significant role in driving success.
  • Secondly, they must have strong communication skills to ensure that their expectations align with their team members.
  • Lastly, leaders need to empower their team members to enhance their productivity and encourage creativity.

As a leader, meeting these fundamental needs will help guide your team toward success and create a positive environment that inspires growth and development.

1. Building mutually-beneficial relationships for leadership expectations

The stereotypical notion of a leader as a lone wolf, capable of accomplishing everything on their own, couldn’t be further from the truth when it comes to cultivating outstanding leadership. True leadership excellence lies in the ability to empower teams to achieve collective goals. A leader cannot exist without a group of individuals to guide and inspire, which is why fostering genuine connections is the cornerstone of exceptional leadership. Instead of merely interacting with people, great leaders seek to truly understand and appreciate their team members for who they are, not just for what they can offer. By establishing this fundamental level of trust, relationships take root and thrive, benefitting both parties involved. Join us as we explore the crucial role of building mutually beneficial relationships in unlocking the full potential of leadership greatness.

2. Developing the people you lead 

Developing the people you lead is not just a facet of leadership; it is a pivotal responsibility that directly influences the success of both individuals and the organization as a whole. This often-overlooked aspect of leadership deserves profound attention, as neglecting it can lead to detrimental consequences such as high turnover rates and stunted organizational growth.

Employees who perceive limited opportunities for personal and professional growth are more inclined to seek new challenges elsewhere. This not only results in a loss of valuable talent but also impedes the overall progress of the organization. Therefore, leaders must prioritize the development of their team members and integrate it as a core focus of their leadership strategy.

Investing in the growth and learning of employees is akin to investing in the organization’s future. It creates an environment where individuals feel valued and empowered to reach their full potential. This ongoing commitment to development is not merely an option but an integral component of great leadership.

Continuous learning is the lifeblood of individual and organizational evolution. Leaders should emphasize the importance of staying informed, acquiring new skills, and adapting to evolving challenges. Providing opportunities for skill-building and advancement is not only a benefit to the employees but also a strategic move that enhances the organization’s collective capabilities.

Moreover, fostering a culture of development is crucial. When employees perceive that their growth is not just encouraged but celebrated, it creates a positive feedback loop. This positive environment promotes innovation, creativity, and a sense of fulfillment among team members.

In essence, great leaders understand that the success of their organization is intricately tied to the growth and development of their people. By emphasizing continuous learning, creating avenues for skill enhancement, and instilling a culture of development, leaders ensure that their teams are not just adapting to change but driving positive change. This approach not only benefits the individuals within the organization but also propels the entire team towards sustained success and growth.

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3. Leading through change

Most human beings don’t like change but exceptional leaders can get around this because much of the job as a leader is about pushing people through things they don’t like. The key is to empower people to take ownership—this way people feel invested and like they are growing (see above). And, no matter what is happening in the world outside of the organization, great leaders keep moving forward and ensuring that the purpose, mission, and vision remain the same.

4. Inspiring the organization  

While inspiring people may seem like a “soft skill” it’s actually a critical part of great leadership. Leaders should provide inspiration so that others can find greater meaning in a vision or purpose. Without meaning, and without connecting inspiration to the individuals who follow you, you’ll find that those who follow will have a difficult time committing themselves to the greater purpose. This helps people see that every little thing they do matters.

5. Decisive Leadership  

Making no decision is a decision and is the worst type of decision a leader can make.  Leaders must make decisions and execute those decisions.  Even an incorrect decision is better than no decision at all.  Critical decision-making is a top skill of exceptional leaders. Evaluating plans, understanding risk, organizing thoughts, and creating action steps requires leaders to bring their whole selves and think critically. Success requires establishing an aim and devising a comprehensive, multifaceted approach to achieving it. Confidence in decision-making is another way great leaders establish trust among their people. Once a decision is made a great leader commits themselves and is ready to execute that decision.

6. Communicating clearly and concisely

Exceptional leadership goes beyond personal communication preferences; it entails understanding and adapting to the communication styles of others. Effective leaders recognize the importance of sharing meaningful information and ideas that drive informed actions and decision-making. Communication is not solely about conveying messages; it encompasses the exchange of information, active listening, asking thought-provoking questions, and engaging in collaborative brainstorming sessions. By fostering clear and inclusive communication, leaders create a dynamic environment where ideas flow freely, diverse perspectives are valued, and collective goals are achieved. Embracing this holistic approach to communication empowers leaders to inspire and connect with their followers, ultimately driving growth and success.

7. Creating an environment of accountability 

People expect their leaders to be accountable. But as a leader, you also expect your people to be just as accountable. A culture of accountability however starts with you. In practice, this may look like openly committing to initiatives, plans, or ideas so that everyone knows what you’re responsible for. It may also include you apologizing to those you lead when you drop the ball in a significant way. Accountability creates a better environment for your followers and allows them opportunities to become more efficient and creative through their own responsibilities.

8. Leadership and performance beyond expectations

Leadership that consistently delivers performance beyond expectations is marked by a combination of several key factors.

  1. It requires visionary thinking, as exceptional leaders possess a clear and inspiring vision for the future that energizes and mobilizes their teams. They set ambitious goals that challenge the status quo and push the boundaries of what is possible.
  2. Exceptional leaders foster a culture of excellence, promoting a strong work ethic, continuous learning, and a commitment to high standards. They cultivate a sense of accountability and empower their team members to take ownership of their work and strive for excellence in everything they do.
  3. Effective leaders build strong relationships and foster a sense of trust and collaboration among their team members. They create an environment where individuals feel valued, respected, and supported, leading to increased engagement, motivation, and loyalty.
  4. Finally, exceptional leaders lead by example, demonstrating integrity, resilience, and a willingness to go above and beyond to achieve outstanding results. By embodying these qualities and inspiring their teams, leaders can consistently deliver performance that exceeds expectations and drives organizational success.