One of the most important things you will ever do as a leader is to learn how to bring out the best in others.
Once you believe in yourself and sense you're on the right track, it's time to focus on bringing out the best in others. Here are some of the most effective ways to empower those you lead:
Evaluate them thoughtfully. The best place to begin is with evaluation. Giving inexperienced people too much responsibility or authority too soon may set them up for failure. On the other hand, people will become bored, discouraged, or demoralized if you move too slowly. People genuinely want to succeed, and it is your job as a leader to assess and evaluate them so that you can provide them with the resources they require to grow.
Lead the way. Even the most successful people look to their leaders to set a good example. You have the opportunity – and the responsibility – to show others how to lead. Model the attitude, work ethic, and standards that you wish to see in others.
Have confidence in their success. As a leader, you must assure people that they can succeed and demonstrate that you want and expect them to. People want to know you believe in them. Tell them frequently that you believe they will succeed and provide reinforcement as often as possible. People will begin to believe they can accomplish what you assign them to do once they realize you genuinely want to see them thrive and are committed to helping them.
Give feedback. It is your responsibility as a leader to provide people with honest, positive feedback and to mentor and coach them through their mistakes and misjudgments. Feedback should never be perceived as criticism, but rather convey empathy and caring.
Give them authority. Many leaders are willing to delegate tasks and give others responsibility, but empowering others means sharing your power and ability to get things done. People only become strong and effective when given the opportunity to make decisions, solve problems, and face challenges.
Celebrate them publicly. Tell people publicly how much you believe in them. As you raise people, demonstrate your confidence in them, and you'll be surprised at how quickly they'll live up to your expectations.
Allow for autonomy. Give people the toolset and skillset to make decisions and succeed, then give them the freedom to continue on their own.
Bringing out the best in others is a win-win situation for everyone—it frees up your time as a leader to focus on the important things, and it can increase the effectiveness of your team and company. Most importantly, it's the right thing to do.
Lead at the top of your game: When you bring out the best in others, you have a huge impact on the lives of those you empower.
Louise Heite is an ICF certified Executive Leadership coach who helps leaders fuel their best selves and find breakthrough success.
With a track record of proven results, she helped scale and lead global customer support groups, built strong partnerships with Fortune 500 companies, and headed a crisis management team that brought over 2,000 people to safety. She is passionate about helping high-performing individuals excel professionally and achieve greatness in their lives and beyond.
We're on a mission to fast-track the journey to success for all leaders.