The skills needed to succeed in the modern workplace are evolving. This article is part of our skills series, which investigates what different roles and different departments need in order to do their jobs effectively and efficiently.
This article goes over the key leadership skills to look for when hiring or promoting someone to management level. We’ll discuss leadership types and priorities according to our proven executive leadership report.
6 Key Leadership Skills
Innovating Strategic Initiatives
A good leader understands the importance of taking initiative, and is able to come up with and lead innovative and strategic initiatives to further the company. This means that they take the lead on projects, proposals, and processes that are new, high-impact, and aligned with the company vision and mission.
Making full use of your team’s time, talent, and other resources is key for good leadership. Knowing where to allot which resources for maximum returns takes strategy, an understanding of your team’s strengths and weaknesses, and knowledge of your industry and how your business works. These are all marks of an excellent leader.
Utilizing Organizational Synergies
Organizational synergy refers to the various parts of an organization acting together seamlessly.
Like the human system, the organizational system only functions optimally if all of its interdependent parts are working effectively together. Do, for example, the processes, structure, people, metrics, culture and technology come together to support the strategy of the organization?
A good leader will be able to utilize the different ways an organization works together, bringing their teams from simple interactions to effective implementation.
Producing Quality Results
Value depends on output more than input. High-quality input usually produces high-quality output, but when it comes to leadership you want to look at results. When evaluating leaders, look at whether their teams are happy, whether they hit their targets and deadlines, whether they produce results, and how high the quality of their (and their teams’) output is.
Being a leader goes beyond simply managing others. A manager will instruct and coordinate, a leader will mentor and train. Instead of taking employees and utilizing their skills, great leaders will equip and empower their team members to ensure growth for both their employees as well as the company.
Maintaining High Personal Standards
Great leaders set a good example for their team, which means continually striving to improve and raise the bar. A good leader “leads by example,” credits their team when things go well, and shoulders the blame (to improve later on) when things go wrong.
What leadership skills do you look for when hiring for a managerial position? Share in the comments below.