If you take a look inside most any management textbook, you'll find that there are four classic functions of management that have been written about for decades: plan, organize, lead, and control.
While I personally believe that these functions still do have their place in business, they don't really tell leaders how to best to unlock the energy within the members of their team to get things done.
In my many years of business experience, I have found that five powerful leadership habits make the biggest difference in the success of every leader -- and the organizations they work for.
Great leaders are masters of making things happen in their organizations by unleashing the energy and enthusiasm of each and every one of their employees. Great leaders create more energy in their organization than they consume by creating compelling visions that inspire their employees to bring their very best performance to work every day of the week.
Empowering the members of your team means giving them the responsibility -- and the authority -- to do their jobs at a high level of performance. Great leaders leverage the power of their team to accomplish a common purpose and goals. When you get out of the way and let your people do their jobs, their creativity and commitment will follow.
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The best leaders today are coaches, not watchdogs or micromanagers. Encourage your people to try new things to further the organization's goals, and to take risks -- and reward them when they do. And if they fail, don't punish them -- instead, encourage them to pick themselves up and try again.
Information really is power, and as the speed of business continues to increase, the right information must be communicated to the members of your team, faster than ever. Err on the side of more communication rather than less, and work to hone your own communication skills as a leader.
It's true -- you really do get what you reward. If you want your people to do more great work, then recognize and reward their efforts when they do. Not only will you build a culture of excellence, but your people will be happier, more engaged in their work, and more loyal to you and your organization.