Leadership is not just about having a title or a position of authority. True leadership is about being able to inspire, motivate and guide others towards achieving a common goal.
TNM’s approach to mastery in leadership is grounded in the belief that leadership is a journey, not a destination, and that true mastery comes from a commitment to continuous learning and growth.
But what should a leader’s learning focus on?
Step 1: Understanding Oneself
The first step in leadership is to gain a deep understanding of oneself. This involves developing a clear sense of one’s values, strengths, weaknesses, biases and areas for growth. That awareness of self extends to an awareness of how the leader’s actions and behaviours impact others and being willing to adjust their approach accordingly.
How do leaders get that awareness? Great leaders are open to feedback from others, including coaches, to help them identify their blind spots. They take time to reflect on their actions, decisions, and outcomes. They ask themselves and others what went well, what didn’t go well, and what they can do differently in the future. This helps them to learn from their experiences and make better decisions in the future.
Step 2: Understanding Others
The second step for leaders is to focus on developing their emotional intelligence: the ability to understand and manage their own emotions as well as the emotions of others. Emotionally intelligent leaders are better equipped to build strong relationships, handle conflict and inspire and motivate others.
By recognising that a leader is only a leader if others follow them, leaders put their team at the centre of their attention. Understanding others is a critical part of being able to build a strong, cohesive team. Great leaders appreciate the need to create a culture of trust, respect and collaboration, empowering their team members to take ownership of their work and contribute their unique perspectives and ideas.
Step 3: Understanding the systems in which they operate
The third step is to develop a deep understanding of the systems in which we operate. This includes understanding the organizational culture, the political landscape, and the economic forces at play.
How can leaders achieve this? By seizing opportunities for exposure to different parts of the organization, encouraging and participating in dialogue and debate, and having access to outside experts and thought leaders.
So when will I know that I’ve mastered leadership?
Those who have mastered leadership recognise the progress they have made but realise that they always have more to learn. They are curious about themselves, others and their working environment and dedicate time to improve themselves on a continuous basis. They move backwards and forwards between the steps like an Escher staircase… enjoying the journey rather than focusing on the destination!
If you would like to find out more about how TNM supports leaders in their journey, book a discovery call to have a conversation with one of our consultants