Leadership advice is passed around, but it is often not well thought out or useful. It seems that there are so many resources, but they don’t seem to focus on servanthood in the leadership role. John Watson, the CEO of Chevron, recently shared some excellent tips when it comes to leadership.
Watson shared that there are three things that will make the best leaders that lead in service. He said that you should learn how to read others, listen to people, and build relationships. While this seems simple, it will take some work to pull off.
Learning to Read Others
If you want to read others, you need to be self-aware first. Be familiar with yourself and learn how to evaluate others by asking questions. You must pay close attention to how you act and how others perceive you and act themselves.
Consider the following questions as you seek to learn how to read people:
- How can I maximize my employee’s skills and strengths?
- What makes my employees behave the way they do?
- What makes my team get going each day and motivated to do what they do?
It is quite possible that self-awareness will enable you to see the potential as a leader in someone else. Work to understand your team in order to find top candidates for future leadership roles.
Learn to Listen to People
Likely, you won’t be able to learn how to read people if you can’t listen. Try to listen to others and develop the skills that are required to be a good listener.
Listening skills can be developed, but one way to really improve the skill is to think through how you can help the other person while you listen. Those that listen well can find the depth and meaning behind the conversation and how the other person truly feels about the situation and topic at hand.
If you want to build a relationship, you need to spend time with the other person and truly get to know them. Let them feel how much you value them. Get to know the people that work for you. It’s ok to know more about their personal life, professional life, and really understand what makes them tick.
Working to know someone means that you are trying to build a relationship. It is a two-way street but you can begin the process. A strong leader realizes that getting to know someone on a personal and professional level will produce much profit for a relationship.
As a leader, make it your business to read those around you, listen well, and build relationships. Be self-aware and critique the important part you play in this process of leading others. Their success and yours can often lie within your leadership.
Written for us by our associate Gary Sorrell, Sorrell Associates, LLC.
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