6 Effective Leadership Skills in the Workplace

“Great leaders are born, not made.”

I believed it to be true for the majority of my career — and only recently did I realize how much this perspective limited my personal growth and career development. Maybe you’ve also fallen for the myth that leadership is a skill reserved for an elite few, and in the process, cheated yourself out of a powerful opportunity for growth.

While all of us do have talents and traits inherent to the personalities we were born with, some of the most important components of a successful career can be learned, including effective leadership skills.

If you want to become more productive and efficient in your work environment and inspire others to do the same, start by focusing on becoming a stronger leader. The good news is, developing these skills doesn’t require a special education or degree, or even an official management title; anyone motivated enough to grow can become a leader.

In my own career journey, I’ve noticed some of the most important traits most great leaders have in common. Want to be one of them? Here are six effective leadership skills to adopt and refine in your work, starting now.

1. Communication

To lead well, you have to have a vision — but you also have to know how to communicate it effectively.

When I first started my company, I was so passionate about my vision. I developed my product with this vision in mind, knowing it could transform our customers’ lives. The challenging part was learning to communicate that vision as I grew my team.

It’s one thing to inspire people with a big-picture vision when you’re launching a company, but it’s an entirely separate skill to find creative ways to articulate aspirations for the future and rationale for transformation.

Good communication isn’t just the ability to write a good email or nail a presentation. It’s the ability to inspire, motivate, and challenge people with a broader vision, even in the doldrums of everyday work — finding ways to help each member of your team understand the big picture of where you want to go and how their roles and projects contribute to it.

2. Integrity

When I think of effective leadership skills, the first thing I think of is integrity. And I’m not the only one. In one study of 195 leaders across 15 organizations, 67 percent of participants rated “high ethical and moral standards” as the most important leadership attribute.

Taking shortcuts or being dishonest might lead to temporary wins. However, if there’s one thing I’ve learned in my career, it’s that cutting corners doesn’t lead to lasting success. And it certainly won’t be rewarding.

As author and business leader Jon Huntsman, Sr. writes in his book Winners Never Cheat, character is the defining trait of a successful leader:

“There are no moral shortcuts in the game of business or life. There are, basically, three kinds of people, the unsuccessful, the temporarily successful, and those who become and remain successful. The difference is character.”

I think of integrity as integrating your values with your words and your words with your actions. When you lead with integrity, you build trust among your team and stakeholders, which means they’re more likely to go the direction you steer them.

3. Decisiveness

It’s not always easy to make a high-stakes decision, especially if you know people are relying on you to make the right choice. More often than not, a critical decision you make won’t pan out the way you planned. If this happens, you will be faced with another critical choice: Will you assume responsibility? Will you be willing to take the blame? And, more importantly, will you be motivated to find a better way forward for your team?

The ability to make a decision under pressure is an important part of leadership, but the true mark of a decisive leader isn’t the ability to make the right decision. Great leaders don’t just know how to make good decisions for those they’re leading; they’re also willing to take the risk of knowing if things don’t work out, they will be the ones held accountable.

4. Focus

Imagine you’re a passenger on a boat. There’s a storm approaching, and the waters are becoming choppier by the minute. Not only that, but it’s getting dark outside, and you’re not sure which way the shore is. Who would you look to for a sense of safety?

A leader is a lot like the captain of a ship. The person at the helm isn’t just responsible for deciding where the ship is going to end up at the end of the journey, but actually steering it in the right direction, even during a storm. That’s why staying focused is such a crucial part of effective leadership.

Great leaders keep their eyes toward success, which requires planning ahead, staying organized, and thinking through potential scenarios and outcomes — all the while considering other paths forward if things don’t work out.

5. Humility

If you want to encourage others to learn and grow, you have to be willing to learn and grow yourself. This requires humility, or a willingness to be flexible, admit you’re wrong, and even more importantly, openness to learning from other people. Another way to look at humility is teachability.

Practically, how can you implement this skill in your workplace? Problem solving is a great opportunity to practice being a teachable leader.

For example, if you’re trying to find a solution for an issue, try not to push your own agenda. When your team senses you’re open to (and eager about) their ideas, a greater diversity of potentially transformative ideas will emerge.

Plus, when your team knows you encourage free thinking, they will likely be more motivated to take initiative and work independently to develop their own solutions and ideas.

6. Connection

As a leader, you have the privilege of bringing out the best in the people around you — a key ingredient for success in your company. But to foster success, you have to focus on connection first.

Neuroscience teaches us that if people don’t feel emotionally safe, they won’t be able to access the creative, strategic part of their brain. Instead, they’ll be focused on survival — which isn’t exactly a recipe for flourishing, in life or at work.

It’s the leader’s responsibility to facilitate connection and belonging in the workplace so that others can live up to their full potential.

To foster a deeper connection among your team — and empower them to live up to their potential — view them as people, not just as workers. Say hi with a smile. Remember details about their personal lives. Compliment them when they do well, and let them know you see their hard work and contributions.

As you build meaningful relationships with your co-workers, you’ll be able to live up to your potential as an effective leader, too.

More Tips on Leadership Skills

The success of our day is largely dependent on the quality of our planning. Not to miss out anything in their to-dos, some people prefer to make a list of upcoming tasks in a notebook, while others have long started using digital technology solutions.

Calendar applications are some of the main tools that are worth using to organize our life and plan your time carefully.

Many people have switched to specific tools; however, there are still some who do not use calendars on a daily basis. They may find some applications uncomfortable to use, non-functional, or expensive.

In this article, we are going to check out the best calendars apps to help you stay organized.

Before You Download

As you are no doubt aware, there are all kinds of calendar apps available. Instead of you sifting through the hundreds of them, we’ve handpicked 10 of the best calendar apps you can get. On top of glowing reviews from each one, we’ve considered the following aspects when creating this list:

  • User Interface – How you navigate the app should be smooth and simple. The buttons on the app should be clear, obvious and easy to move through.
  • Synchronization – Whether it’s with other calendar apps or with other apps, syncing apps should be easy and enhance your overall experience with the app.
  • Additional features – Since there are so many options for calendars, many of these apps offer additional features. These features make the apps stand out from the other apps and provide unique experiences to you.

1. Any.do Calendar

This calendar has direct integration with Any.Do To-Do List, which gives you a unique tandem of two applications.

Apart from its extended functionality, Cal Calendar is easy to use. The creation of events is very simple and fast.

What is more, depending on the name of the event, the application automatically adds contacts and geolocation data to the entry description. You can even import your lists and entries from Any.do.

Any.do Calendar is a great option for any type of user. It is very convenient and doesn’t overcomplicate the mode of display.

Another good thing is that this tool is available for free, so you can use it without spending a dime for the software.

Download Any.do Calendar here!

2. Google Calendar

Google Calendar is the official calendar for Android devices that has been tested out by many users around the globe. If you are right now trying to get away from it, consider changing your mind.

Since this application is installed on most Android devices by default, many users think that there is nothing special in this program. They are wrong.

Google has been updating its calendar for quite a few years, and now it comes in Material Design with advanced event features, direct integration into other Google services (for example, supports reminders and Google Now), and comes with Exchange support.

The program is super easy and will not cost a dime for you. It is a good thing, right?

Download Google Calendar here.

3. IRL Event Social Network

 

One of the most unique apps on this list is the IRL Event Social Network app. As you can guess from the name, the core focus of this app is social networking. Unlike other social media platforms, you can consider this platform to function similar to Meetup.com. It’s a site where you can connect with other people within your area that share a similar interest.

IRL is that while also providing a convenient calendar for you to schedule events and plan out your day. Though due to it being a secondary focus, you’re lacking a lot of the syncing aspects that other apps have on this list. Regardless, because of this huge social feature, it’s worth considering for those who want to make more connections.

Download IRL Event Social Network here.

4. Business Calendar

Business Calendar is geared towards people who use their calendar for work purposes and business task planning. It offers different modes with wide configuration capabilities.

The application gives a default view mode by months, and events can be marked in different colors. Display modes/ sorting can be adjusted to your needs (by month, day, year, or events).

You can also set a multi-day viewing mode to see how things look for the next few days. Scrolling up and down moves you by month, and if you check a few days, they will be shown in a more detailed form.

The day display mode offers hourly scheduling, and the schedule mode provides a detailed schedule for a single event.

Business Calendar is a great tool for planning/ scheduling cases, tasks, and events. There is a support for recurring events, which can be set up in just a few clicks.

Having purchased software, you can use it to import and export other calendars, delete, copy, or move several events at the same time.

Android Business Calendar application may seem somewhat chaotic, but it works fine and is easy to work with if you play with it for a while.

A full version of the application is available for $4.99, but you can also find a free version for the app test drive.

Download Business Calendar here.

5. Calendar

Calendar is a relatively new app. It works as a web app and for both iOS and Android devices. It is an intelligent app that learns your contacts, schedule and tasks. It also helps you schedule and arrange meetings according to your available time slots.

A good thing about Calendar is that it allows you to sync up with other calendars you use such as Apple Calendar and Google Calendar. And so you can manage all the calendars you have in one place.

Calendar also gives you analytics of your meetings, giving you a clear picture on how you can improve your time management.

Download Calendar: Meeting & Scheduling here.

6. aCalendar

aCalendar opens our collection of top 10 calendar applications available on the market today. With its appealing design, easy navigation, and great functionality, it is one of the most popular calendar apps in our list.

Some of extra functions include color schemes for each case type (48 colors to choose from), different types of demonstrations, different widgets, moon phases, and much more.

Taking into account it functionality, aCalendar is a reliable calendar application that has an easy-to-navigate interface with three display options. Scrolling from side to side allows you to switch between the display modes of the month, week and day.

When scrolling down and up, you are moving through the calendar at intervals in accordance with the selected display mode.

Apart from its time planning feature, aCalendar synchronizes photos from contact lists or social networks to remind you about birthdays, anniversaries, or any other special dates.

The program also supports data transfer through NFC and full-screen widgets, which eases your work with any data.

The program is available for free, but you can also get even more features if you buy the extended version of software for $4.99.

Download aCalendar here.

7. DigiCal Calendar

DigiCal Calendar is very similar to Cal Calendar in the fact that the application focuses on design more than on its functionality. However, this doesn’t mean that the application doesn’t serve the purpose.

With this calendar application, you can synchronize all your calendars and view them in different ways.

Along with the basic functions, this program comes with support for Google Calendar, Outlook, and includes some unique and interesting features. You can match keywords to the image or set up a dark theme.

The app can even show you the weather forecast for three days. There are many other features that deserve the attention of people who really like to use calendar applications.

Download DigiCal Calendar here.

8. SolCalendar

SolCalendar can be called a universal application. It claims to be an all-in-one digital solution having a basic calendar functionality combined with some other advanced features, such as weather forecast for a specific day.

The application supports Google Calendar, as well as tasks, widgets, lunar calendar and even Foursquare.

Those searching for a calendar application to cover just everything in its functionality, SolCalendar is a program to consider. There are a lot of interesting things in this application; the program does an excellent job working in “all-in-one” mode.

Test SolCalendar – the application is available for free. You can test it out without purchasing the service.

Download SolCalendar here.

9. Today Calendar

Today Calendar is one of the most hip and edgy calendars in our list. The solution was one of the first ones that really embraced Material Design and remains one of the few that adhere to the neat style.

The calendar application offers bold colors, simple controls, and great functionality. This is not as heavy an application as many others; it will not eat all the memory of your device.

If you are not searching for something complicated and over-functional, Today Calendar is what you need. You can always test the application before paying for it – the program is available for free.

Download Today Calendar here.

10. Timepage

Timepage is an intuitive calendar app that will manage your time in a way that other calendar apps can’t. It offers the same sort of functions that you’d expect from other calendar apps: opportunities to record events, notifications and reminders, weather, and driving duration to a particular event. However, the app goes beyond those functionalities in two ways.

The first way is that while the app sends you notifications, it also has reminders for you for what is coming up next. That bit of extra time can allow you to prepare and make adjustments to your day if need be.

The second function – which is more important – is the heat map when you go to see the full view of your calendar. This heat map indicates what days you are most busy and other days where you are freer. This heat map provides a quick glance to determine broadly what days are good to add more events and other tasks.

Download Timepage here.

Our Verdict

Searching for the right application to manage your various calendars and plan your busy day can sometimes turn into a streak of obstacles.

Most of us need flexible applications that can be easily used to manage our tough schedule. The application should have all necessary time planning functions and be intuitive.

Stylish design and limitless compatibility also matter. It is not always easy to find such a program.

The above digital calendar solutions fall under the category “worth” of being used. They are modern, multifunctional, easy, and easy. Pick the one you like!

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