6 Ways to Become a Leader Everyone Wants to Work For

Becoming a leader is more than about self-affirmation, it is about people. It is about guiding your team and your community to be the best versions of themselves as they can be. It’s about being the Michael Jordan, or better yet the Oprah Winfrey or Elon Musk, of your company, team or organization.

Being a leader is more than about making yourself look good, but making sure everyone else does. Becoming a leader means you are the one to take upon more responsibility than just yourself, but for a whole team.

Seem like a lot? Yes? But the pay-off is well worth it.

It requires extra work, persistence, vision and drive to see your team soar high beyond your expectations. Everyone wants to be a good leader or to work for a great leader (and possibly some day lead on their own). I find that working in teams, I naturally gravitate to the leadership position, as my teammates can feel the power, compassion, and drive that oozes from my soul in everything that I do.

They feel this and want to follow—but with these great gifts, comes great responsibility. Not only do I have to make sure my work is exceptional, but it is also my responsibility to see my teammates produce unique work as well and to grow and develop their skills. All of this is in my foresight for my team goals—to see each and every person excel and to have the team shine as a whole.

Here are a few essential traits that I inspire and aspire to portray as a leader everyone wants to work with:

1. Service Mentality

Don’t get this confused for weakness, my friends. This is the most powerful tool any leader can use. Why? When you’re less worried about your ego self, the flow of life becomes simpler. How? Because it’s less about you, and more about others. So, what is this so-called service mentality? It is a mindset that is customer centric (meaning having customers best interest in mind). When you finally realize that business is a ‘service’ based industry and that you cannot make money by just serving only yourself, you will be prosperous. A customer, passion and service centric mentality is essential to the flourishing of any leaders business and their followers. 

2. Courage and Integrity

What is Integrity? It is the courage and guts to confront any issue or animosity directly. You call people out constructively for their own well-being (devoid of condemnation). You stand up for what’s right and adhere to all of the rules no matter what. You admit when you are wrong and solicit feedback. You relinquish your ego-self and replenish with your leader-self. You face fear head on, running into your biggest insecurities, faults, and defects. This is the only way to heal, self-reflect, and lead others.

3. Openness

Clarity and unambiguousness are what your team is looking for. They want a leader that is transparent and shares what she or he truly desires and feels. They want you to be honest and open with them. Traditional leadership has sometimes been seen as controversial because leaders would “lie” to their employees for ‘their own good’. A white lie only covers up what will later be revealed, thus spawning inherent distrust among traditional leaders (i.e. financial, political, religious and governmental institutions). This has led to a new construction in the realms of our current systems and institutions. Trust and openness are the new business and leadership model. Not convincing? This is what Stanford Business says about How Smart Leaders Build Trust.

4. Passion

For whatever you do, this is the most crucial element for any leader. There must be passion evident and overflowing from your being that is infectious to all—your team, family, friends, etc. This is one of the most important qualities that will then stem into all of the other qualities. This is the most important aspect to keep alive (keep feeding the fire consistently). Passion comes from within your core, it is not something topical. Here’s how you can dig deeper to find it.

5. Consistency

Your team, employees, and group need consistency from they way you speak, act, deliver ideas and projects–and most importantly, emotionally. They need consistency to keep them in cadence, because it ‘s hard to follow a boss that is all over the place. You must be the living epitome of the microcosm that you are trying to represent, this being consistency. Be what you ask for in your team members or employees. Be the very thing you need and want times ten. Consistency allows for measurement, accountability, reputation, relevance and validity in your message.

6. Wisdom

Every good leader needs the wisdom to help guide their people. Preceding wisdom comes experience. With knowledge comes the collision of self-reflection. This makes it possible for one to guide themselves, as well as a team. One can have the highest IQ, EQ, and credentials, but without experience—you are missing something very significant. This is like holding a textbook with all the answers to life, but never opening the book. Without wisdom, intelligence, EQ, and experience combined, you are missing a vital part of leading. But with a combination of all of the above-mentioned ingredients, you are on your way to designing an invincibility serum in leadership. This is what Harvard Business School thinks about Wise Leaders.

In essence, being a leader that everyone wants to work for is more dynamic than simply mastering one field. To become unstoppable, you must develop, craft and execute each skill mentioned to be the best leader you could have ever imagined yourself to be. This is not a one-time deal but takes consistency. Use these golden nuggets of truth to begin the journey to becoming the best version of yourself daily.

This article is inspired from forbes.com Jess Schmitt. Image sourced from entrepreneur.com

How to Influence People and Build a Sound Community Around your Business

I’ve always had big dreams, growing up with my head in the clouds imagining how I could make the world a better place.

I always admired Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Rosa Parks and Jane Austin. I’ve always had big dreams, growing up with my head in the clouds imagining how I could make the world a better place. I always admired Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Rosa Parks and Jane Austin. I kept my eyes on them because they inspired me, they made me believe that I could do anything when my parents or friends told me “You could never do that, it’s too difficult”. I always still believed, no matter what anyone said. Growing up most of my life as an introvert, I found it difficult to function day-to-day with people. My social anxiety left me unable to speak most of time, while all of my thoughts, opinions and experiences were casted away forgotten and unexpressed. All of the brilliance and intelligence that were hidden beneath took years to be able to expose. I didn’t realize how important my voice was and how I could use it to create the world around me. Back then, I wanted to save the world. I wanted equality for all, I wanted a clean environment, and hopefully some day my own business. I had big dreams, but lacked the ability to express them to others. There was so much passion and drive spewing from my being, with nowhere to focus it. I look back now and realize how silly I have been to let my voice, my charisma, and my happiness lie dormant for so many years.

It began in my undergraduate years of college when I studied political science. My professors were slowly chipping away at my anxiety and building a strong, well-expressed and influential person. We had research presentations, negotiations, debates and socratic seminars that were graded based on how convincing you are to your audience and if you had a relevant provable argument. This is an introvert’s nightmare, well, for me it was. I dreaded every single minute that my voice cracked, my hands shook, and my mind went blank. I did not enjoy this, but it was a journey towards growth. All of the activities, projects, presentations and debates groomed me and made me stronger. I realized that in life, you ultimately (on every level) have to communicate with human beings on a day-to-day basis to share your vision of the world and to create things anew. I realized that this was not possible by staying within my comfort zone.

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. – MLK

The ability to communicate effectively and rally a team towards a common goal are often underestimated when making a dream business come to fruition. Look at some of the greatest leaders in our society like Gandhi, Martin Luther King, and Bill Gates. These powerful individuals mastered the art of influence and driving social change to be successful.

Here are 6 tips to influencing people and building a community around your business.

1. Practice Charismatic Communication

First and foremost, it is important to be charismatic but to also communicate with the people around you, whether it be a team, a business, a best friend or boyfriend/girlfriend. Charisma is keeping a good attitude, inspiring others with a charm that is compelling and inspirational. If you’re having trouble with unleashing your authentic charismatic self, work on being comfortable with who you are and loving yourself as is. This ability to accept yourself one hundred percent will grant you comfort with yourself that others will feel and see. They will be open and feel compelled to either follow or talk to you because there’s something “different” about you, a glow and aura that they cannot seem to describe that attracts them.

2. Invoke Genuineness and Authenticity

There seems to be something special about the humbleness and authenticity of Gandhi and biblical figures like Jesus that led them to have the most followers and impact on society by shifting their climate for the better. The gentleness that blanketed people like Jesus led him to have a huge following of believers; where he taught them, loved them, and befriended them. Or Gandhi, where he inspired radical change through peaceful protest while remaining genuine and gentle when it came to the injustices he saw in the world. Both of these individuals remained genuine and authentic to their true selves. Being inherently peaceful in nature, they utilized authenticity to drive the change they wanted to see in the world, and it worked. The key is to find the truth in you. Here is how you can bring authenticity to your brand or business.

3. Have Transparency

Being open and honest about everything in business is crucial. Your employees, customers, friends or family do not want to be deceived or misguided. Don’t overlook the importance of being truthful and completely transparent. It may sometimes feel counterintuitive to expose the truth, but by doing so, you give your audience more trust in you. When we are honest, it invokes a feeling of trust in others because you are transparent and open enough, to tell the truth regardless of what others may think. This is key in influencing people and building a community. People are looking for a leader that they can trust their lives and families with. They want to know they can trust you when things get tough.

4. Master the Art of Finesse (the ability to recognize and feel environments)

Finesse is defined as the skillful handling of a situation or adroit maneuvering. It is important to be able to feel a situation or the character of a person as they are and handle the situation in a way that is graceful and maneuvers you, your business, friends or ideas out of the fire and into flourishing environments. Finesse requires careful attention to yourself, your environment and others.  It requires you to interpret how we, as people, interconnect and cause a ripple effect in every situation. Knowing your surroundings when creating your dream is essential to its ability to grow. Let’s say your business is like a garden. By not being aware, one may allow pests to come into the garden and destroy all of your glorious work. But finesse will allow you to pluck the pests before they can affect anything.

5. Improve Your Emotional Intelligence (EQ) and Self-Reflect

Read books like Emotional Intelligence 2.0 that aid in increasing your emotional intelligence using the four core EQ skills―self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management―to exceed your goals and achieve your fullest potential. In building your business or brand, EQ in essential in influencing people and building a community around your business. If you can master your own emotions and relationships with people, you can build your vision, you can get your dream job, you can be the change you wish to see in the world.

6. Have a Strong Mission and Core values/ethics

Concepts like the Golden Circle explain that people don’t care what you do, but they care how you do it. This means that how and why you are building your brand or purpose is inherently very significant. Surrounding your mission and core values within the brand and reinforcing these aspects will lead to a trustworthy, authentic business or idea that will yield dedicated followers, employees and friends. They care to see that what they are supporting has good and solid roots.

Life is about interacting with people, helping them, solving problems, seeing the world and creating. If you are a person that has big dreams that your friends or family says will never happen, tell them to think again. People always seem to say “anything is possible”, but how? Do they wave a magic wand to grant all of their dreams to come true with one flick of the wrist? Not likely. The people who believe anything can happen to believe in hard work, persistence, and never underestimate the emotional intelligence and the ability to influence people on a daily basis.

If we do not have this, we do not have change. By investing in yourself, we do not have the brilliant business idea that falls through the cracks because of bad communication. We get the next wave of innovation by embracing interactions with people and driving them toward our vision that we see is just over the horizon. Begin building the ‘you’ that has always been within. Start making the dreams and visions that you have always dreamt. Start to make your contribution to the world with your brilliance, your passion, your ideas, and your inspiration.
Start now.