Many intelligent, dedicated professionals practice the time-honored tradition of uninspiring leadership. They don't do it on purpose, it's just that they're used to the "Giving Orders and Controlling People" model of leadership. Uninspiring leadership doesn't have to be the norm because there are positive alternatives available to anyone who chooses to use them. The first step to shifting your leadership approach is to assess whether you practice uninspiring leadership, that is, behaviors like the following:
- Lack of empathy.
- Getting angry at people.
- Not trusting employees.
- Lacking organization.
- Not delegating.
- Not admitting mistakes.
- Not believing change is possible.
- Adhering to one way of doing things.
- Continuing to do things that don't work.
- Thinking you have all the answers.
- Resistance to new ideas or approaches.
- Not listening to people.
- Imposing solutions from outside.
- Not asking for or valuing employee input.
- Lack of self-awareness.
If you want to do the things on this list, you're welcome to and you'll see results based on your actions. If you'd rather inspire yourself and others, then you'll do the opposite of these things, for example: If you don't currently delegate effectively, work on learning how to delegate. Inspiring leadership is about having the self-awareness to let go of the thoughts and behaviors that don't work and replacing them with new approaches that yield positive results. This gives you the power to choose how you think and behave in the workplace and what kind of leadership style you prefer. What will you do to practice inspiring leadership?