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How to Become a Better Leader

Tue, 05/02/2017 By Vanessa Hara
How to Become a Better Leader As a student, you may have come across peers or seniors who are natural born leaders. Their charisma and ability to inspire and influence others might have left you in awe. You might even have thought to yourself: “How can I be like them?” Thankfully, leaders are believed to be made, not born. While it is true that some people possess leadership flair, the ability to lead is something that can be honed with plenty of experience and practice.

Value of Leadership

Leadership is a valuable skill that can boost your prospects, as many employers pay attention to evidence of leadership when hiring. Beyond that, it has powerful benefits that can significantly improve your life.

Instils a sense of responsibility
As a leader, you will be accountable for your team’s well-being, accomplishments, and failures. A team is only as strong as its leader, thus their success is largely dependent on your ability to motivate and unite them.

At the same time, your team members are more likely to look up to you and follow your lead if you demonstrate exemplary qualities. Hence, taking on leadership roles can mould you into a more responsible individual – one who will lead by example and put others first.

Hones problem-solving skills
Leaders are tasked with tackling a wide range of challenges. Whether you are motivating your team after a major loss or trying to manage time effectively, you will have to find ways to solve issues that could thwart your team’s success.

Understanding (and caring about) people
A team is typically comprised of diverse individuals with different personalities, ideals, and perspectives. As a leader, you will have to connect with and understand each of them in order to keep them engaged. Being empathetic – that is to put yourself in others’ shoes – can go a long way in boosting team morale. Being in a leadership position will enable you to learn more about people and put empathy into practice.

How to Develop your Leadership Abilities

Lead a team
There are many opportunities to take on leadership roles in and out of the classroom. Besides leading group projects, you can also assume leadership roles in CCAs ranging from performing arts to science clubs. The best way to learn is indeed through experience!

Spearhead an initiative
These days, it is common to see youths trying to change the world. Why not follow in their footsteps and start your own movement? You can set up a fundraising drive for abandoned animals, or launch a recycling programme in your school. Regardless of your chosen project, this will be the perfect opportunity for you to take charge of a cause.

Speak to an audience
Apart from building your confidence, public speaking can also hone your communication, listening, and observation skills. Speaking to a large crowd will train you to be aware of your communication technique, as well as your surroundings. For instance, if you notice that members in the audience are getting distracted, you may want to draw them back in with interesting anecdotes or speech styles. Public speaking is an art which you can master with enough practice. Start by giving presentations and talks at workshops, then work your way up to being an emcee at school events!

Seek a mentor
The good thing about school is that there are seniors, professors, and advisors who will be able to impart precious insights to you. If you would like to have more guidance in your journey, you can seek mentors who are willing to share knowledge, advice, and constructive feedback with you.

Are you inspired to become a leader? Read about other valuable qualities in What Makes a Scholar and 7 Scholar Qualities that Organisations Look For!

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