Being a Connective Leader: Tips to Inspire and Motivate Your Team
Leadership comes in many shapes and sizes, but there is one type that stands out among the rest: connective leadership. Being a connective leader means inspiring and motivating your team to work together towards a common goal. It’s not about commanding, but rather connecting with people and earning their trust and respect. In this article, we will discuss the nine principles of becoming a connective leader.
1. Encourage Creativity
One of the essential qualities of a connective leader is to encourage creativity in your team. Every person has unique skills and talents that can be harnessed towards finding innovative solutions. As a leader, it’s your responsibility to explore and empower every member of your team. Diversity can bring innovation, so involve everyone in decision-making, regardless of their personality.
2. Become an Active Listener
To be an effective connective leader, you must listen carefully to your team members’ thoughts and ideas. Listening and hearing are not the same things. Listening means paying attention with an open mind, clarifying points of confusion, and empathizing with what’s being said. By being an active listener, you show your team members that you care about them and help them trust you.
3. It’s Okay to Fail
Failure is not defeat; it’s a way to learn and grow. No one is perfect, and your teammates will make mistakes. It’s your role as the leader to provide a safe environment that allows your team members to self-correct after making mistakes. Compliment their effort and encourage them to keep going. Remember, “A drop of honey catches more flies than a gallon of gall,” so always be kind and understanding.
4. It’s All Right to be a Friend
Gone are the days of autocratic leadership and dictatorship. To be a connective leader, it’s necessary to develop a personal interest in each member of your team’s growth and success. Have genuine conversations and connect with them emotionally. By doing so, you create a more positive, productive, and motivating environment where everyone feels valued.
5. Lead Your Team on a Journey
Your team members are diverse individuals, each with a unique set of skills and experiences. To be a connective leader, you must lead your team on a journey, involve them in making crucial decisions, and overcoming difficult challenges. Success is a journey, not a destination. Allow your teammates to experience the joy of overcoming each obstacle on the way to success.
6. Invest in Your Team
A great connective leader understands the need to invest in their team’s education and professional development. As an individual team member grows, so must the organization or group become bigger and better. To double the strength of your team, triple the education of your team members. Investing in your team members also fosters loyalty and provides more opportunities for future growth.
7. Give Recognition
Don’t try to steal all the glory yourself; give credit where credit is due. Hearty recognition and praise from a leader are fundamental motivators for employees. Take note of even the smallest things and make sure you compliment openly, so the receiver can be happy. This will also encourage other members of the team to strive harder, receive recognition for their hard work, and achieve more significant success.
8. Let Your Actions Inspire Others
A great connective leader always leads by example, and from the front. Your subordinates will start to follow you by doing what you say. They will give their best to try and become like you. People naturally follow leaders stronger than themselves. Being a connective leader requires respect, which can only be earned through actions.
9. Trust is a Must
To be a connective leader, you must earn the trust and respect of your team members. Encourage them, don’t judge them, and don’t do divide and rule. Be their number one cheerleader and stay on their side, and you will be rewarded with their trust and loyalty. No matter what you do or say, without trust, you will never be an effective connective leader.
Being a connective leader is not a complicated task. If you apply the nine principles discussed in this article, you can become a skilled connective leader that inspires and motivates your team. Encourage creativity, listen to your team, and let them know it’s okay to make mistakes. Be there for them, invest in their success, and give recognition where it’s due. Lead by example, earn their trust, and together, you can achieve any goal.