In our last blog post we looked at how developing strong relationships with others in the company is a useful way to build confidence and overcome certain leadership fears. This network of solid relationships helps reduce fears and fosters unity. Trusted and respected friends can offer critiques without causing offense.
Leaders who convert critiques into improvements develop the strongest followings and have the fewest fears. They not only welcome feedback, but they request it. They view constructive feedback as free self-development lessons.
Take intentional action on the feedback you receive. Nothing earns you more respect than admitting you need to improve and taking the required steps to do so. Make sure people can see how your improvements impact their lives. Knowing that every person can improve eases fears. Everyone is in the same boat, and no one has cornered the market on personal and professional development.
Being intentional about preparation – and even over preparing, at times – removes uncertainty and builds confidence. Gathering facts and data builds objectivity and reduces subjectivity, where concerns and fears can grow. Anticipating the outcomes of different scenarios leaves less to chance. If you weigh the pros and cons of potential choices, your assessment can help you set aside fears, understand the truth and scope of circumstances, and trust the people who help you determine them. These are positive, logical approaches that create the most effective outcomes because they minimize uncertainty.
Intentionally sharpen your focus on the tasks at hand. Many leaders are distracted by side ventures or rabbit trails. Tempting opportunities often muddle the picture and invite confusion and doubt. As negative emotions gain a foothold, fears quickly follow and self-confidence plummets. Leaders must stay personally focused, while simultaneously focusing on everyone else. Your company’s vision, goals, and objectives are your battle cry; distractions and noise must be blocked. Your path to your goal should remain unobstructed. When everyone maintains focus, you can conquer chaos, keep emotions in check, and minimize fear.
Intentionality is perhaps best seen in leaders who show resilience when facing setbacks. People need to see a strong, determined leader, particularly during tough times. If you can quickly dispatch disappointments and find something positive in the problem that confronts you, your people will feel more encouraged. This, in turn, encourages you.
Battling fears is easier when you have your people’s faith and support. Establishing a never-give-up approach musters courage, and the greatest leaders adopt this mindset. They may still experience fears, but their determination to move forward with small wins overrides most anxieties.