In the UK and internationally, Sandy Idigbe is becoming a household name. Having one numerous awards promoting diversity and social issues, Sandy has been recognized as a leading international campaigner and social issues influencer.
She frequently lends her voice to support many movements that affect young people, including Women in Politics, Women On The Board and social issues like knife crime and youth unemployment. It was a pleasure to sit down with Sandy at our New York office and discuss leadership skills.
There’s a difference between being the head honcho at your company and being a leader. Great leadership transforms a good company into an amazing company according to Sandy.
The good news is that everybody has the ability to improve their leadership ability. Great leaders are made not born. And at the end of the day, great leaders need to exemplify the actions they want to see.
Look through this list and decide on one area you want to grow in. (If you’re not sure where to start, seek feedback from those who know you!) Commit to developing one of these skills over the next 30 days. Make a goal that every day you are going to do one thing to exemplify that attribute. Once it feels like second nature, move on to another attribute on the list.
When we refuse to settle and expect the best from ourselves, we become better leaders and inspire our teams to give the best versions of themselves, notes Sandy.
An engaged leader sincerely values their people. When you value your people, the culture of your business shifts. People will want to work harder for you and help you achieve the vision you have for your business.
You can have the best offers, coolest office, and cutting edge tools, but if you don’t win the hearts and minds of your people, your organization is never going to become great.
To be a great leader, you have to help your people develop their talent and unlock their potential. This requires getting to know them and their strengths.
Think about what your employees are good at. How can you help them grow? Look for opportunities that will open doors and develop their talents.
A true leader creates connections, not just between themselves and the people on their team, but between the team members themselves, and between their team and their customers.
You have to set the example that building strong connections is a part of your culture and your company. Carve out time to connect with your employees and get to know who they are.
The best leaders create a culture of ownership in their companies. That requires you stepping up and showing ownership yourself.
Nothing takes your credibility as a leader away faster than being a hypocrite. Your people should know that they can count on you to do what you say you’re going to do.
Even the best leaders make mistakes and fall short, but what sets them apart is that they take responsibility for their actions and work to make it right.
Let your team see you own up to your mistakes. You’ll earn their respect and set the precedent that your company values personal responsibility.
If you want to be a better leader, you can’t shy away from communication, even when conversations are tough.
You have to set an example of what open and direct communication looks like. Don’t blame. Instead, always be working toward positive resolutions in your conversations with everyone.
A true leader doesn’t need to take all of the credit. You are there to lead your team, and that means that everybody gets the chance to shine. Your team’s success is your success.
A truly engaged leader enables and empowers everybody on their team to shine. Sandy Idigbe is a true leader.