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60 Seconds to Being a Better Leader Now – Do You Do These 5 Things?

About Dr. Mary Kelly

Dr. Mary Kelly with a PhD in economics, is an internationally-known economist and expert specializing in the fields of leadership, productivity, communication, she focuses on strategy and tactics that improve productivity and profit growth. Commander Mary Kelly served 25 years in the US Navy as an intelligence and logistics officer, mostly in Asia. She was an HR Director, a chief of police, and she was part of the team that ran Pearl Harbor. Fun and funny, Mary is the best-selling author of 11 books, and her latest, Why Leaders Fail and the 7 Prescriptions for Success is used in 9 countries.

There are certain skills a leader must have in order to progress their team forward, be effective within the company, and be successful in their own career.

1. Manage the Time Devoted to Projects

Everyone is short on time. A leader’s challenge is to manage time as the scarce resource it is. Not everyone manages their time or their projects efficiently. An effective leader makes sure that there is a balance between the importance of the job and the amount of time devoted to it. Time constraints must be a part of the ultimate goal.

When considering a project, great managers quickly analyze how long the project will take. Is it worth the time? Is it worth investigating? Is it worth doing? Cost-benefit analysis has to include not just the explicit costs – those costs that are easily measured, but also the implicit costs – the time needed and owner-supplied resources that are often absorbed but not measured.

2. Make Good Decisions in a Timely Manner

Strategic leadership requires thoughtful analysis, planning and execution. Managers and leaders who are most successful invest time to consider a variety of scenarios and the consequences of potential actions. Taking calculated risks is important. This creates an atmosphere of being willing to try new ideas and new avenues that may have large payoffs.

An important part of being a good leader is the ability to make good decisions quickly. Overthinking, overanalyzing, and the desire to have 100% of the information leads to delayed decisions. We are never going to have complete information, so have to settle for a percentage. As the pace of work accelerates, the ability to make good decisions based on partial information increases competitiveness.  According to Forbes:

Fast, accurate decision making is the mark of a successful manager. When you know how to make good decisions — especially when you’re in a time crunch and under pressure — you’re likely to achieve your objectives and goals, no matter how big or complex they are.

3. Create Goals That Align With The Vision

The right goals help us save resources, be more efficient, and increase profitability. Without clear goals, managers and teams are simply working, not moving forward. Goals should be clearly mapped out, within an attainable reach, and be part of the big picture.

Mick Spencer, founder and CEO of ONTHEGO starts each new year with a three-year vision of his company — from the ground-floor vision to a top-line perspective. Need help creating a vision and goals for your group? Here is our 5-Minute Vision Plan.

4. Invest in the Team

We are better when we harness the brain power and energy of others. Before my FutureNomics program this morning, the amazing facilitator, EmCee, and speaker, Kristin Arnold gave me a suggestion for the 2-hour session. I did what she suggested, and it made the session better. I am so grateful! 

If we are not improving, we are likely getting worse. Even people with years of experience need continuous, quality training to stay current. We all need help to improve. 

Great leaders know that we have to provide opportunities for our teams in a variety of skills such as:

  • How to communicate clearly
  • How to deliver and receive constructive and positive feedback
  • How to develop interpersonal relationships that are responsive and effective
  • How to promote collaborationships and teamwork
  • How to convey empathy and concern at work

Receiving guidance is necessary to be able to see every viewpoint in a job. This means listening and seeking help when necessary. Asking for and taking advice showcases that you are willing to continuously look for ways to improve. Whether it’s Leadership Coaching or collaborating with a fellow colleague, it is crucial to get the help you need, when you need it.

5. Be An Expert

We may know the company we work for, but in order to succeed, we must know both our company and the industry. To motivate the people who work with us, they must know the who, how, and whys of the company. Knowing how their work fits into the whole picture means we must know as much as possible about the company, future events, future changes, and the overall industry trends. Staying current and relevant in the filed by reading trade publications, articles, and books, attending conferences, and meeting with colleagues is necessary to add value. 

To Learn more about Dr. Kelly contact [email protected]

Derek Sweeney is the Director of Speaker Ideas at The Sweeney Agency. www.thesweeneyagency.com. For 15 years Derek has been helping clients find the right Speakers for their events. Derek can be reached at 1-866-727-7555or [email protected]