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Written by our CEO, Peter Rabey.

Successful leadership is dynamic; it’s a combination of a variety of skills and daily habits. Effective leaders typically have a routine with key habits and processes practiced daily.

I am a big believer that becoming a great leader requires patience and a desire to learn. A great book on this is Martin Lanik’s The Leader Habit. Lanik discusses how only by turning skills into habits, can an individual really change and acquire what it takes to be a successful leader.

Of course, there is not one answer that outlines the habits required to become a successful leader, as leadership success means different things to different people. Through my conversations with successful leaders on the Leadership Learns podcast, I’ve had the opportunity to discuss the different habits different leaders believe are essential.

My top picks are from Dr John Blakey, CEO at The Trusted ExecutiveDax Grant, CEO at Global Transform and David Gandy, Founder of David Gandy Wellwear.

Ability, integrity, and benevolence - John Blakey

John Blakey discusses how the nine habits he believes can create a successful leader fall under three pillars: ability, integrity, and benevolence.

Ability: 

  • Deliver – Follow through on promises
  • Coaching – Teach people rather than ‘tell’ people
  • Consistency – Unpredictability of behaviour can be a huge destroyer of trust

Integrity: 

  • Honesty – The basis of trust
  • Openness – Sharing your vulnerability and human touch
  • Humbling – Have the confidence to recognise your own weaknesses

Benevolence: 

  • Evangelise – Spread your vision, inspire, and motivate
  • Bravery – Moral bravery, sometimes there will be self-sacrifice
  • Kindness – Being kind can change the whole complexion of a situation

Don’t be inward looking – Dax Grant

There are huge opportunities to be grasped by being outward looking. Your business model doesn’t have to be rigid but can morph into different possibilities and prospects.

If leaders can adopt the habit of developing an outward focus whilst balancing an inward mindset, your hard-work and efforts will see maximised results.

Risk Taking - David Gandy

Being CEO of a company often means getting comfortable with making tough decisions.

Almost everything can be a risk if you make it one. Deciding when to hire, introducing new technology systems or even moving offices all have the potential to be the wrong decision. It’s important to make informed risks, not reckless ones. Back your risks by research, data, trends, and demand, and trust your gut feeling about the industry.

Give your team confidence to take risks too.

When you’re growing your team, you’ll be hiring to fill gaps where your personal strengths may fall short. If you’re hiring a social media manager then social media is their field and specialty, but it may not be yours. Not only is it important for employees to trust you, but it’s equally as important for you to trust them.

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