2 critical people skills effective leaders possess

I am often asked how our clients are doing – are they growing, making money, investing in people and equipment? My answer is almost always the same: organizations that are led by effective leaders, regardless of their industry, size, or geography, are doing well in the short-run and are positioned for future success.

There are many traits of effective leaders and much has been written about the topic. But two traits that both deal with people often stand out—effectively aligning people and their talents within an organization and motivating team members for peak performance.

Putting the Right People in the Right Roles

Aligning people in an organization is different than filling an organization chart. Leaders align people and managers fill desks. Putting the right people in the right spots and convincing them to move together in the same direction is more of a communication issue than a design issue.

An effective leader determines the strategic position for key employees based on the organization’s needs and team member skills, and then sells the vision to the employee and convinces others to embrace the opportunities created. Often the goal is to convince team members that the result was consistent with their own ideas.

Motivating For Peak Performance

The other trait often associated with successful companies is a feeling of empowerment within the organization. Effective leaders tend to trust and motivate others and are less controlling and demanding (but still have high expectations). They realize peak performance in an organization is a result of the collective efforts of all, not a few. Motivation and empowerment result in more energy and better ideas.

Where are you when it comes to these two traits—aligning people (getting the right people in the right spots) and motivating others, rather than dictating demands? Today might be a good time to pause and reflect.

Stephen W. Christian, CPA

Stephen W. Christian is a director at Kreischer Miller. Contact him at Email or 215.441.4600. 

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