COVID19 has had a devastating effect on world economies. It has created widespread uncertainty and fear. It has already brought many businesses to closure and thrown many hundreds of thousands of people into unemployment, or on to government benefits. It will take decades to recover and for countries and businesses to regain confidence and find their “new normal”.
In times like this, where countries, businesses and people are looking for direction there has never been a greater need for strong and authentic leadership.
So what makes a good leader?
Good leaders inspire support and lead by example; they care about the people they lead and build trust with them; they act predictably and consistently and are responsible for bringing as much certainty as possible into uncertain times. They also delegate responsibility and mentor those around them to grow in their roles.
Good leaders need to be resilient and have courage and endurance to “weather the storm and steer a steady course”. They also need to be able to embrace change and adapt to what’s happening around them. Of course, a good dose of optimism balanced with an element of realism and honesty is also essential.
Anyone can be a good leader at any level. You don’t need to have a leadership title.
In business, politics or just life in general, good leaders influence those around them by inspiring others by their own actions, their empathy and understanding and setting high personal standards.
People who are good leaders also tend to be open minded. They listen and are accepting of honest feedback and will use it to improve their own leadership skills. There is no place for inflated egos– in fact it’s quite the opposite, as a quiet confidence and humility is a quality shown by many of the recognised great leaders in history, who have the ability to inspire others to follow them. Take for example Nelson Mandela or Australian Edith Cowan. Her story is well worth knowing: https://www.womenaustralia.info/leaders/biogs/WLE0162b.htm
In these “unprecedented times” we look to leaders who show these qualities and strive to become better leaders ourselves. By doing this and leading by example, we strengthen our own communities and hasten our recovery.
Written by Dianna Crebbin, Director