How Great Leaders Bring Out the Best in Others

April 26, 2015

By: Tushar Vakil*

Most people possess far more potential than they ever get to use in their day to day lives. A great leader brings out the best in others. Whether a parent, a manager, school teacher or a CEO, we all need to motivate others to put in their best efforts and bring out the best in them.

Why do some leaders succeed in motivating their people while others can’t inspire their people despite all efforts?  In this brief article, I will share 3 principles for inspiring people in all walks of life including businesses, non-profits, education and social causes.

Expect the best of people

A leader’s expectations from her or his people become a self-fulfilling prophecy.  Leader’s attitudes and beliefs are contagious. When a leader does not believe in or expect the best of the employee, this message is conveyed through body language, impacting employee performance.  On the other hand, when a leader believes in his or her staff, it affects the overall attitude as individuals will put in their best efforts to live up to this expectation.  Great leaders expect the best and give people a “worthy reputation” to live up to.

Establish high standards of performance

Inspiring leaders set high standards of performance.  However, they understand that the high standards cannot be achieved overnight.  So they break down long term vision into goals and stretch tasks. Once people achieve these goals, the leader raises the bar a little higher to challenge people to take it up a notch.

Recognise and applaud achievement

One of the deepest human need is to feel needed, wanted and appreciated.  Very few workplaces have a culture of appreciating small and large achievements. Creating a culture of genuinely appreciating the contributions and efforts raises the morale of the employees. Employees who feel appreciated and valued perform better and are more loyal.

If you aspire to be a strong leader who inspires others, find ways to routinely include such key principles into your day to day interactions with employees in order to see the improvement in their morale as well as performance.

 * Tushar Vakil is the Vice President (Learning & OD) at Outstanding Productivity

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