Your elevated position of power doesn’t necessarily make you a leader – it makes you a boss. There are a number of soft skills that are necessary in order to be a good and effective leader, but you don’t need to be a seasoned veteran in your role to qualify. Leadership skills can be learned at any time, so if you’re looking to move up the career ladder or trying to get a promotion, leadership skills are a good skill set to hone. 

How Do You Learn Leadership Skills?

Effective leaders have a wide range of soft skills. There are many opinions about what kind of skills a good leader should possess, as well as what exactly makes a good leader. Regardless, there are a few core skills that most good leaders have. They can be learned, either over time by emulating a mentor, or by taking a course like the leadership development course from

Here are the top four skill areas that are important in a leadership role. 

1 Communication

Communication in the workplace is vital when it comes to running a successful business. Most issues that occur at work originate from some kind of miscommunication, whether it is related to a project timeline, a client’s needs, or an issue between two coworkers or departments. An effective leader can manage business communication well by actively listening, asking the right questions, and by relaying messages clearly. 

A leader who can make sure communication is clear, organized, and offering something in the way of valuable information, guidance, inspiration, or assurance is a good communicator. 

2 Motivation

A boss tells their employees what to do, but a good leader will motivate their team to do the best work they can. Goal-setting can tie in here, as having an achievable but challenging goal is a big motivator for employees, and as a leader, it’s your job to help them set these kinds of goals. It’s also important to find tasks and projects that are stimulating to your employees since work performance is tied to how motivated and interested someone is in the work they’re doing. If your employee is bored or unchallenged, they can check out and underperform. Employees need to feel inspired to go the extra mile, so leaders must be part of that inspiration. 

Leaders should also motivate with the right kind of reward to encourage everyone to continue putting their best work forward. Often praise is enough, as long as it’s sincere and deserving, but a reward system in place is a great incentive. 

3 Conflict management

Disagreements or issues between employees, departments, or disgruntled clients and customers can be a stressful situation to deal with. A good leader knows how to deal with conflict as well as step in and diffuse a situation. Bringing positivity to the issue at hand is also a good skill to have since a positive attitude can go a long way in a tense situation. These skills are what can turn a stressful work environment into a happy and healthy environment where everyone feels heard and respected. 

4 Feedback

Recognizing hard work and offering praise when it’s earned is a great skill to possess as a manager, and it’s essential for a leader. Offering feedback is just as important, but be careful of micromanaging. A good leader will take the right opportunities to provide useful advice to their employees about their performance, then step back and allow them to make their own decisions and give them room to improve their skills and how they work.