how to become a better leader
Group of friendly businesspeople with male leader in front

Today, competition has permeated all areas of life. There are always several candidates for such positions as head of a class at a school, head of a group at an Institute, commander of a detachment in a camp, head of a Department, or head of an enterprise. And they usually choose not gray and downtrodden, though Executive mice, but a real leader, a helmsman who can lead people in the right direction and take responsibility in the most problematic situations. This is honorable, authoritative, flatters the inner self-esteem, and, as a rule, is a good step up for a career. But how do you become a leader to succeed?

Who is the leader

To become a leader, you need to be clear about who it is. In psychology, this is the name of a person who in a particular group (class, group, organization, division, team) enjoys General recognition, has unlimited authority, and exerts influence in the form of governing actions. By and large, this is the leader. Voices goals and objectives, makes responsible decisions, solves problematic situations, persuades everyone to go in the same direction, is a guide between the higher authorities (teacher, Dean, Director of the enterprise) and subordinates (students, students, employees).

According to psychologists, people are not born, but become leaders under the influence of various factors. Here education, the process of self-development, random circumstances, and examples of other people are important. The main thing is that you can develop your organizational skills at almost any age. True, it will take time and effort, but constant and hard work on yourself will definitely bring results.


Sometimes it happens that the teacher chooses a diligent excellent student for the position of head of the class. Yes, she can be responsible and diligent, but at the same time completely have no influence on her classmates. As a result, it does not cope with the responsibilities assigned to it.

The same thing happens in companies. The post of chief is occupied by a diligent and Executive person with the appropriate education. But he can’t establish relations with his subordinates: character soft, voice quiet, eyes running, does not show itself in any way, only goes for everyone and begs to hand over reports on time. The result is that his Department has the lowest performance indicators.

These examples show that responsibility, diligence, diligence and diligence are not enough to become a leader.

Therefore, the first step on this path is to find out what skills a Manager needs to become a leader.

Make a list of qualities that need to be developed. The most basic:

  • perseverance, iron willpower and firmness of character;
  • loyalty to the chosen path;
  • charisma;
  • positive attitude;
  • ability to support others in difficult situations;
  • excellent communication skills, ability to establish contact with almost any person;
  • high intellectual abilities, broad Outlook;
  • well-delivered speech that allows you to convince and win arguments;
  • activity, initiative, constant generation of ideas;
  • responsibility and discipline.

This is just a basic set of leadership skills that need to be developed first. So that you do not relax, you should immediately make a reservation that, having embarked on this path, you will have to work on self-development all your life. The real head, leader, and centrovik after mastering the above skills will find that it would not hurt to learn how to calculate risks in advance, critically evaluate each situation, admit your mistakes, be generous, trust people, and much more. So there’s no time to stop.



You need to understand that becoming a leader is not as easy as it may seem at first glance. Many on this path are waiting for failures. Often — only because they are not ready for pitfalls. You need to know your enemies in person-psychologists name 5 main barriers that occur in the life of each person and prevent some of them from taking an authoritative position as a leader.

Lack of ambiguity of goals

If your life doesn’t make sense, people will never follow you. This gives a sense of an inner core, which others also intuitively feel and begin to respect the person who knows exactly what he is striving for. But remember: becoming a leader is not a goal at all, but only one of the tasks on the way to achieving the main dream.


Excessive impulsiveness, a desire to have everything at once, eccentricity-believe me, these are not leadership qualities at all. Cultivate patience and regularity. Sometimes you need to take small steps, but-every day to reach the final goal, and not jump seven-mile steps — there is a great risk of running out of breath at the very beginning of the distance or falling into the abyss.

Comfort zone

In the process of working on yourself, you will have to leave your usual comfort zone, take risks, communicate with unpleasant people, meet new things, and not be afraid to be a pioneer.

Internal Complexes

One day, on your way to success, you might meet a person who will hit you where it hurts. It can be anything: a defect in appearance (because of which you are complex since childhood), mistakes of the past (which of us did not commit them), Psychotrauma. Be ready to fight back, otherwise you will immediately be knocked down from the pedestal.


Do you think everyone will be delighted with your leadership habits? Authority, a career, a prestigious position – everything you want to accomplish can arouse hostility and envy in those around you. And often-family and friends.

People who are psychologically ready for such barriers on their way will be able to overcome them. Maybe not the first time. They stumbled – got up-and started crossing the barrier again.

Stages of development

Barriers are not all the obstacles that you will meet on your way. Do you want to be an effective leader who does not know defeats? In this case, you will have to go through 5 stages of formation. If you get stuck and stop at one point before you reach the end, consider that the goal has not been reached.

Zero level

For myself. Learn to trust yourself, take responsibility for what is happening in your life, and manage your own emotions.

Level I

Microlevel. Become a leader in a group of friends of 3-5 people. They should recognize your opinion and trust you with the final say in decision-making. Learn to put things in order in such a micro-collection.

Level II

Situational leader. Learn to take responsibility in difficult situations. For example, when the boss is not in place, but you need to receive high-ranking guests. Take a risk and organize their reception at the proper level.

Level III

Golden mean. Earn respect in a team of at least 10 people. Become an authority so that they will listen to you. At this stage, you need to become an opinion leader-generate ideas and convince others of their common benefits. They will follow you — the goal is achieved.

Level IV

Macro level, in the team. Set a goal to take a leadership position in an organization of several departments.

So, you know what leadership qualities to develop. To overcome the barriers on the way — psychologically prepared. The stages on the path of self-development are outlined. Now it’s time to move from theory to practice.

leader signs

leader signs

Advice from psychologists

To become a good leader, follow the recommendations of psychologists who specialize in this issue:

  • Set specific goals and break them down into small tasks. Methodically achieve what you want.
  • Be proactive, i.e. subordinate every reaction to what is happening to your will. Work on self-control. No one and nothing should make you lose your temper.
  • Don’t be afraid to take responsibility and make serious decisions.
  • Take criticism well.
  • Don’t be afraid of anything new. Take risks. Be flexible, learn to adapt to situations.
  • Think and take care of others. Work as a volunteer. Do some charity work. Become a philanthropist.
  • Develop your IQ. Expand your horizons. Improve in the profession where you want to take leadership positions. Engage in rhetoric.
  • Cultivate self-discipline. Learn how to organize your life, work mode, a way of life before you lead others.
  • A pessimist will never become a real leader. Believe in the best, always be in a good mood, radiate positive.
  • Develop physically, take care of your appearance to look presentable and command respect just by your appearance.

Choice of profession

In dreams of leadership, many miss the moment of career guidance. And in fact, what you are working on may play against you in your desire. The librarian, an accountant (even main), the archivist, Forester, account Executive, technician, hairdresser… There is no doubt that these are professions worthy of respect. And Yes, you can always grow up and become a Director of a library or archive. But, as psychologists say, all these specialties are too calm, with a minimum level of stress. Therefore, they are not the most suitable field for the cultivation of their leadership qualities.

Here is a list of professions that are ideal for self-development and leadership training:

  • lawyer;
  • judge;
  • manager;
  • Regisseur;
  • teacher;
  • administrator;
  • creative Director;
  • Minister;
  • insurance agent;
  • psychologist;
  • military;
  • coach.

All these professions provide a fairly high level of stress, which in moderate doses spurs and gives an impetus to self-development. They suggest career growth and, accordingly, are fertile ground for leadership.


To work out the skills of a leader, psychologists advise you to perform a set of special exercises every day. Half an hour a day – and in a month you will feel more confident and ready to lead others.

The following is a set of leadership development exercises developed by psychologists Jose Stevens and Mike Woodcock.

  • Inner critic

Talk to your inner critic, parry him. Does he snidely remark that you don’t look good in that suit? Answer that, but the tie is the height of chic.

  • A small triumph

At the end of each day, write down all your progress. Enjoy them. Praise yourself. Write yourself certificates and give incentive prizes.

  • Constructive criticism

Listen to criticism from the outside. You were made a comment-write it down. Think about how objective it is and how you can get rid of what you were accused of.

  • Elimination of defects

Make a list of 5-10 close people whose love you are sure of. Let them sincerely write down your shortcomings. Gradually begin to eliminate them.

  • “And the king is naked!»

An unusual exercise that shocks many, but it is incredibly effective. Learn to look at yourself in the mirror without clothes without complexes and embarrassment.

  • Those who don’t take risks don’t drink champagne

Take a small risk every day. Ask for a pay raise, declare your love, and jump with a parachute. Fight your fears and insecurities.

  • In a dispute, truth is born

Start arguments (no conflicts) with smart people and learn to defend your point of view, without switching to raised tones and insults.

  • “I am responsible for…”

Make a list of 10 items: “I am responsible for…”. And take responsibility for what you wrote about.

  • Solve problems

Choose one of the problematic situations in your life. Make a responsible decision and analyze the result.

  • Demeanor

Develop a leadership demeanor. Straight posture, always raised head, open eyes, straightened shoulders, exposed chest to meet the enemy, confident voice-this is your weapon.

The main thing is to work responsibly and regularly. Remember: the leader can’t afford to be a hack, because, for others, he is a role model.

How to become a real leader and change your company

First and foremost, serve others

To do this, set up a collaboration. Don’t think: “How do I win?» — try to make the situation profitable for all participants.

Abandon the “give a person a description of their duties and send them to perform them” model. Take care of the holistic development of employees-both personal and professional.

Give others something valuable

Think about what you as a leader can give to others to help them grow. What are your strengths? What unique skills can you use to improve someone’s project, idea, or career?

“Imagine a greenhouse with lots of plants, “says Tony Shay, head of Zappos and author of Delivering Happiness,” every plant is an employee. In a typical company, the leader is the tallest plant that everyone else wants to match. But I perceive myself differently. I imagine myself as the architect of the greenhouse, my task is to create the right conditions inside so that all the plants grow and bloom luxuriously.”

Build a trusting relationship

To do this, do not engage in micromanagement — delegate tasks. Take responsibility for your decisions and their consequences. And when you criticize, give practical advice.

“The days when the boss was the smartest person in the room are long gone, as my team constantly reminds me,” says Scott Farquhar, co — founder of Atlassian. – The leader must believe that his colleagues will make smart decisions. Encourage open discussion and create a safe environment where every voice is heard.”

Listen to understand

Not to get your opinion into the conversation. Train active listening and don’t interrupt people during meetings and meetings. Try to really understand the other person.

Use the phrases “Tell me more about it” and ” Help me understand.” After hearing them, the interlocutor will want to share their point of view. At the same time, he will not feel as if he is being doubted.

Understand your thinking

How do you perceive the situations you find yourself in or the actions you face? How do you view feedback: as something negative or as an opportunity to become better?

Learn to distinguish between useful and useless thoughts, and to paraphrase negative beliefs. For example, don’t use the words “always” and “never” when describing situations and actions.

Share your knowledge

Give others a chance to learn from you. Typical managers, on the contrary, try to keep information to themselves and grab more power. But when you alone have some knowledge, you hold back progress. By sharing them, you will enable your employees to make decisions and offer innovations.

Show courage

People mistakenly think that a servant leader should be nice and kind. But sometimes the best act of kindness is to start an unpleasant conversation, make a difficult decision, and hold someone accountable. It takes courage.

“But courage isn’t just about making hard decisions,” says Mike cannon‑Brooks, co-founder of Atlassian. — And also in a calm attitude to failures. We often think that being successful means always doing everything right. In fact, victories come when you make mistakes and learn from them. You can’t succeed without trying something new, and you have to be willing to take risks.”

Be the living embodiment of your values

Tasks are automated, competition is growing, and it is especially important for people to align their personal values with the company’s values. Try to embody them in yourself and live them. This way you will create a more favorable and productive atmosphere for your team.

Constantly live in accordance with these principles

You can’t become a service leader just by attending one seminar. This is a life-long task. Make these principles a part of you, live them, and apply them in business and social life.


Leaders are not born, but become – this is a fact. Everyone who seriously sets such a goal and makes the necessary efforts has a chance. Do not deprive yourself of this chance, start acting now. Share your success in the comments and visit us again!


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