5 Steps to Assess Your Leadership Skills

By Derek Gaunt | January 18, 2021

Many leaders get to the top, think they’ve made it, and stop trying to improve.

The best leaders, on the other hand, understand that leadership is always a work in progress and that they can always sharpen their skills. They understand that toxic leaders are the No. 1 reason people leave their jobs, so they work hard to constantly get better and get their team to trust them more and more.

If your goal is to keep your employees engaged and build a tight-knit team that would go to the ends of the earth for you, cycle through these five steps regularly to keep your eyes on the prize.

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Communication Skills: How to Deliver Bad News

By Derek Gaunt | January 11, 2021

In an ideal world, everything would be rosy, and you’d never have to deliver bad news to your direct reports. But there comes a time when every leader needs to give negative feedback or share news the team doesn’t want to hear. The way you approach these delicate conversations will make all the difference in the world.

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Communication Skills: How Leaders Can Regain Trust

By Derek Gaunt | December 28, 2020

Even though you’re a leader, you’re still a human being—which means that from time to time, you’re going to make mistakes. That’s just the way it is.

Now, making a mistake isn’t the end of the world—even for leaders. But because of their egos, many leaders fail to admit they’ve made any mistakes at all. They’re afraid of looking weak or being viewed as fallible. For some people, an apology is akin to an admission of incompetence.

When leaders don’t accept responsibility for their own individual shortcomings as well as when the team doesn’t perform the way it’s supposed to, relationships with those around them are damaged. 

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Leadership Training: How to Confront a Fellow Leader

By Derek Gaunt | November 23, 2020

Maybe you keep hearing grumblings about how a leader at the company is demoralizing their direct reports. Maybe you keep hearing about a manager who is quick to take credit for team successes—and even quicker to assign blame when things don’t work out well.

Whatever the case, there will be times when you need to deliver bad news to another leader at your organization. When this happens, there are almost no changes in the approach you’d take if you were delivering the same news to a direct report.

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Infographic: 7 Characteristics of Effective Leadership

By Derek Gaunt | September 22, 2020

Most of us have either been there ourselves or have heard someone else say some form of the following: “The job was great, but I couldn’t work for my boss anymore so I decided to look for something new.”

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5 Reasons Fear-Based Leadership Is Ineffective

By Derek Gaunt | September 07, 2020

Show me a leader who uses fear to get the troops in line, and I’ll show you a toxic environment.

Unfortunately, far too many leaders use fear to get their employees to do their bidding. Maybe the leader constantly reminds employees about the company’s dire finances during COVID and suggests that it’s only a matter of time before someone needs to be let go. Or maybe the leader enjoys calling out an employee’s mistakes to the whole group—leading everyone to constantly worry about being embarrassed or belittled for not meeting the boss’s expectations.

Whatever the case, fear-based leadership is ineffective. There are leaders who might be tempted to use their ego and authority to torment their teams and remind them who’s boss, it’s impossible to get the best business outcomes when you take this approach. 

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How to Demonstrate Leadership Virtually

By Derek Gaunt | August 17, 2020

If you’re like many people, the COVID-19 pandemic has forced your organization to work remotely and embrace the virtual office.

Because of the current state of the world, practically everything is relegated to the digital environment. If you’re used to managing a team in an office setting, you might be thinking that you’ll need to adapt your approach to the new way of working.

Not so fast: When you’re leading virtually, your roles and responsibilities stay the same

There are, however, a few different tactics you may want to prioritize to help your team adjust to “the new normal.” Try them out when you’re trying to demonstrate leadership virtually.

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Which Are You? Boss, Manager, or Leader?

By Derek Gaunt | June 22, 2020

Just because you’re in a position of authority doesn’t mean you’re effective at your job. 

To truly get your direct reports to the next level, you need to be a committed leader who inspires everyone to do their best. Being a boss or a mere manager won’t get the job done.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the differences between each kind of authority figure—the boss, the manager, and the leader—as we rank them from worst to best.

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How to Show That You're Ready for a Leadership Role

By Derek Gaunt | May 25, 2020

In an ideal world, leadership roles would fall into your lap without any heavy lifting.

But that rarely happens. If your goal in your career is to become a leader, you have to take proactive steps. Sure, you can tell your superiors that you’re set on climbing the ladder, but as we all know, actions speak louder than words.

Becoming a leader is hard work. It takes time and it takes skill. But it also takes patience.

If you want a leadership role, here’s what to do.

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Passionate Leadership: 4 Must-Have Traits

By Derek Gaunt | May 11, 2020

We’ve all worked for bosses who weren’t exactly inspiring. Whether an individual didn’t treat you with respect or berated you is beside the point. You didn’t operate at your full potential because you didn’t have the support or the encouragement you required to do so.

You don’t want to become one of those bosses down the road. As a leader, you’re committed to your team’s success. You want to help every one of your employees get to the next level.

And that starts with passionate leadership. Here are four must-have passionate leadership traits that will help you inspire greatness in your team.

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