Wednesday, October 27

How to become a leader at work

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WHETHER you have just gotten into an entry level position or you’ve worked at a company for some time, it is extremely important for you to possess the skills of a leader.

This does not necessarily mean you have to be the boss. Having leadership skills means you have what it takes to contribute meaningfully in the office.

Having leadership qualities not only allows you to progress further in your career but also makes you stand out in the office.

Becoming a reliable leader is when your peers and your employers can rely on you to handle any task. This is a win not only for you but for the whole organisation.

But the real question remains – how do you become a leader at work? Here are a few things you can do to cultivate leadership qualities at your workplace.
• Be observant
Being observant in your work surroundings will enable you to identify things that others don’t normally pick up on.

Understanding the culture in your organisation – such as, how every colleague behaves – can really help when interacting with each person effectively.

Identifying various traits and personalities will better equip you on how to handle different situations and personalities in the office.
• Listen and communicate well
Effective communication is an important skill.

The simplest way to enhance this skill is to listen actively and understand what others are trying to convey.

Once you know what others are trying to communicate to you, you can then respond appropriately.

If you don’t understand something, being able to ask for clarification is another crucial skill to have. It is better to ask and be clear on what is at hand.

It saves a lot of time so we need to be mindful that when communicating, we should always know how to approach things in a courteous and professional manner.

• Be a volunteer outside of work
Getting involved in any non-profit organisation or club gives you the opportunity to develop and hone your leadership skills.

It also shows your commitment to give back to society and do greater good for the community.

Having a voluntary commitment gives you the chance to contribute to your community and build a meaningful network.
• Give credit where credit is due
Success doesn’t always stem from an individual, in most cases it comes from the collective efforts of your peers.

Be the one to motivate and encourage your peers; keeping in mind the need to acknowledge everyone’s efforts.

If you see a peer falling behind, pick them up and get them back on track.
• Find a mentor
It is essential to have a healthy relationship with your superiors.

They are in their positions for a reason and you should learn from them at every opportunity.

Maintaining a good rapport with your superiors also allows you to know if you are on track and if your efforts are contributing to the organisation’s success.

Human Resources practitioners have seen a degree of success for businesses adopting the mentorship system as it benefits the organisation in the long run.

This is a weekly column by SarawakYES! – an initiative driven by Faradale Media-M Sdn Bhd and supported by Angkatan Zaman Mansang (Azam) Sarawak – to provide advice and stories on the topics of education and careers to support Sarawakians seeking to achieve their dreams. Join us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.