Monday, June 2, 2014

You Don't Sound Like a Leader, You Know?

If you’ve worked hard and have been rewarded with a leadership role, congratulations.
Now, every time you open your mouth you can inspire, motivate, persuade and coach others.
No pressure, right?
It can be intimidating to think that your words now will have much more power. But on the downside, you also face the threat of undermining yourself if you don’t learn how to talk like a leader. Without the right words at the right time, your leadership track may be a very short one.
As entrepreneur Jim Rohn notes: “The challenge of leadership is to be strong but not rude; be kind, but not weak; be bold, but not a bully; be humble, but not timid; be proud, but not arrogant; have humor, but without folly.”
One of the keys to become a more effective leader is to monitor how others react to what you say. For example, do you feel you’re not really being “heard?” Do you hear that employees are finding you harsh and insulting? Or customers report finding you arrogant?
Any of these reactions is a sign that your communication needs to be improved. Let’s look at the mistakes you’re making that hurt your leadership effectiveness.
  1. Dishonesty. One of the things you’ll quickly learn as a leader is that there are some things you are told not to discuss with employees – and the employees will do their best to get you to tell them. Don’t lie to employees when they begin to probe – just tell them that it’s something you cannot discuss and change the subject. It’s especially important that you don’t let your guard down at something like a cocktail event where you admit, “Yeah, we never should have hired that guy.”
  2. Gushing. Constantly using words such as “awesome,” “amazing,” “unbelievable” and “incredible” can leave you with little to say when something truly needs to be recognized.
  3. Juvenile habits, ya know? Using “uptalk” where your voice ends (read more here)

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