How You Can Become a Better Leader

Our daughter is starting kindergarten in less than two weeks and we’re pretty excited. But the other night, that thought (of kindergarten) got us slightly worried.

When you put Isabel in a room with another child, she doesn’t sit in her corner or only say a polite hello. Rather, she goes straight at them (sometimes attempting her trademark two-hand slap on the cheek)... with a heart-wrenching smile.

So we got worried, sat her down and repeated several times:

Isabel please, don’t try that at kindergarten. Please…
 

I think she got the point. She always does.

Photo credit: harvest breeding / Foter / CC BY-NC

Photo credit: harvest breeding / Foter / CC BY-NC

Why children are better networkers than adults

After our mini drama, I realized there was much to admire and emulate from my daughter. I said to my wife:

Honey, what Isabel does is what makes children so much better than us. They connect. They reach out. We (adults) sit in our corners and process things (acting all cool) while a world of opportunities pass us by. But children? No, they don’t process – they simply connect.
 

Children are much better at building a network. They are much better at connecting. That’s what successful leaders do. We can learn from them. In my previous post, I shared about the power of mentorship.

The truth is, not every reader will act on it. Why? Because we’re waiting for perfect timing. There’s no better timing to connect with people that will help shape your future than today. Right now!

Becoming a better leader

Successful leaders understand the power of making the right connections and building the right network. They surround themselves with people who encourage their vision.

There are four unavoidable actions (in my experience) you can take to help you become a better leader:

  • Take risks! A note of caution: don’t jump off the cliff. But step outside your comfort zone. Challenge yourself. When was the last time you inconvenienced yourself so hard? Remember, there are times convenience makes no sense.
  • Read. I’m dedicating an entire post on reading soon. So many aspiring leaders are simply killing their chances of success because they don’t read books. The stats are frightening, the negative impact even worse.
  • Solve problems. Help your neighbor fix her computer. Offer to proofread your nephew’s college report. Give up your seat to the lady with 2 children in the train. Wait behind after church service to give someone a lift home. Change the baby’s diaper (yes, that one’s for you Joseph!). Connect with people’s needs. Solve problems.
  • Practice leadership. You can’t become better at anything until you try. And when you fail, try again. Leadership is not about becoming perfect. It’s about having a go, taking initiative, living intentionally and doing it all over again. It works. Feel like tweeting that?

You can do this!

How else can aspiring leaders reach their potential? Share some insight below.

About Joseph Iregbu

I'm a writer, purpose guy, speaker and business consultant. My passion is to help people live with purpose and not waste their lives. I live in the UK with my wife, Temi and our gorgeous Isabel Juda. Let's connect on Twitter and Facebook.