02 Sep Six Qualities The Most Trusted Leaders ALWAYS Exhibit
What do the most trusted leaders of our time have that not all leaders show? Leaders like Sheryl Sandberg, Steve Jobs, and Howard Shultz may not be everything to everyone nor should they be to be effective. Yet, it’s clear that there are specific qualities that put them in the group of highly trusted leaders. What are these traits and how can you emulate them? Try on a few of these:
Act and Make Mistakes
Without consistent action, there cannot be progress. Without trying things and learning from the things that do not work, we cannot learn how to improve and make things better. This is true in relationships, and this is true in building a business great or small. If you can learn from your mistakes you’ve already transformed dust into peonies. Learn to have skill in how you deal with others.
If you can do this, you can build anything from Rome to Facebook with the least amount of suffering to all involved. On a Monday, in late August, Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg and COO, Sheryl Sandberg, communicated their recent growth statistic. Mark posted that 1 in 7 humans on the planet used Facebook to connect to their friends and family. According to Forbes contributor, C. Gallo, “getting our minds around that kind of number wasn’t easy before this comparison”. Facebook has been consistently growing the company with action, progress, communication, and people top of mind. It shows.
Solid relationships are like trees with strong roots. Some trees seemingly don’t budge for a decade – it’s the blink of an eye in our human life. Yet other trees are down in a storm because their roots aren’t strong enough to uphold in a gusty wind.
Business does not exist without relationships. Strengthen your roots so that a little wind doesn’t affect your forest. Begin looking at your business with the windows open, sunlight coming in, and the breeze blowing strong.
Steve Jobs’ sheer focus and “zen-like ability” to zero in, allowed him to eliminate unnecessary distractions. “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication,” stated Apple’s first marketing brochure, according to Walter Isaacson, 2012. To understand what that really means, compare any of Apple’s products to those of its competitors. Look at direct early competitors like Microsoft to industry influencers like modern Groupon and see how they have all emulated design intuition to be simple, clean, and beautiful.
Trust Your Instincts
Yes, your gut is a sixth sense. That spot below your sternum is an excellent compass for making decisions. If you ask any CEO about gut instinct, 99% agree that if there is hesitation, if there is a feeling (beyond the thinking brain’s analytics) that you shouldn’t do something, trust that feeling.
One of the few times I didn’t trust my feelings about keeping an employee in a role, proved that my intuition was right. Going against my initial judgment, I decided to keep that employee. That decision cost at multiple levels and went south over time.
Pay Attention and Judge Less
Often our own well-intentioned thoughts run around in our head, and we lose focus on what is important. With mindfulness, we can pay more attention to the patterns of our thoughts and how they provoke our actions. Negative thoughts produce negative actions. Feelings of distrust, pessimism, unease, and unnecessary conflict not only affect how we talk to ourselves, it affects how we interact with others and ultimately, how we do business. Internally acknowledging these patterns and giving a positive nod to them changes the makeup of the brain creating more helpful neural pathways.
Be Your Glorious Self
If you can accept yourself, then you can see your person, your body, and your mind as your dwelling. If you don’t accept your body and mind, then you can’t relax in ease. You have to accept yourself as you are. As you practice being yourself, you become more and more a leader to other people. You do not have to be perfect. You need only trust yourself.
When others trust you as leaders, you can lead in ways you never thought possible because you are coming from a place that is purely you. When you lead from this place, you are showing others how to lead from their place of ease and truth. In essence, you are teaching others to lead in trust and respect.