Berger Leadership Blog

5 habits of great leaders

Dan speakingMastering certain habits can make all the difference between being a good leader and a great leader. The good news for all of us is that habits are developed. Meaning, with practice and focus, we all have the opportunity to become better leaders.

SUCCESS Magazine's Susan Foster lists five habits to adopt to become better leaders. The habits include:

  1. Manage your time. Foster encourages leaders to work in "channels" instead of trying to accomplish multiple tasks at once. "Working in focused chunks of time is more effective than allowing today's to-do list to manage you," she writes.
  2. Learn to delegate. Effectively delegating to others can also help them grow and learn in their roles – another important job of a leader.
  3. Walk around. There is great value in communicating face to face with others. Not only will you build trust among your staff but you may also learn about other challenges and opportunities that would benefit from your attention.
  4. Listen deeply. "Deep listening is being fully present in the moment with the person who is speaking, and not trying to judge or control the conversation," Foster writes. "This kind of listening builds trust and respect, and it encourages the sharing of information you need to make good decisions."
  5. Be open to new ideas. Great leaders are always looking for new ideas and new ways to do things. Encourage your staff to do the same.

Forming new habits isn't easy, and it takes focusing on and practicing skills that may not come naturally. But these five habits will improve our skills and help us be the kind of leaders we want to be. Follow me on Twitter (@BDanBerger).

About the Author

B. Dan Berger, President and CEO, NAFCU

Dan BergerB. Dan Berger became NAFCU president and CEO on Aug. 1, 2013. He was promoted to executive vice president of government affairs in July 2009 after joining NAFCU in January 2006 as senior vice president of government affairs overseeing five divisions including legislative affairs, regulatory affairs, research/economics, regulatory compliance and political affairs/PAC.

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