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Why Leadership Skills are Important in the Workforce

Leadership makes or breaks a business. From communication to strategy, leadership skills are needed now more than ever as the landscape of work changes and many employees have to take more responsibility for their own schedule and stress management as the work-from-home revolution continues.

Having good leadership skills in the workforce helps meet business objectives, retain employees, increase engagement, improve work quality and productivity, improve decision-making and keep teams motivated. Investing in leadership skills is absolutely essential for business growth and employee wellbeing.

What are leadership skills and what does a great leader look like?

While some people may seem like natural-born leaders, leadership is a skill. Like any skill, it can be learned! You don’t need to be a CEO or even a manager to get some leadership skills under your belt. It’s helpful for everybody on a team to be equipped with these skills for a stronger workforce overall.

Researcher and author Brene Brown said,

“I define a leader as anyone who takes responsibility for finding the potential in people and processes, and who has the courage to develop that potential.”

A great leader can identify, nurture and bring to life the highest potential in anything, whether that’s people or a business idea. Leadership skills equip us with the tools to manifest potential and include both strategic skills and people skills.

One of the most important skills for leaders is strategy. A strategy is the first step towards achieving anything. Leadership takes identifying goals and creating step-by-step plans in order to reach those goals. While many leaders are great visionaries, nothing is attainable without a roadmap, and often these practical tools are what fantastic visionaries lack the most and need some help in learning.

At the same time, the perfect strategy is useless without people bringing it to life, and these people need to be productive, happy and communicating well. Great leadership requires a lot of emotional intelligence and communication skills in order to ensure the people that make up a workforce are supported in functioning at their very best.

How Leaders impact the workforce

You may have heard the term “people quit their bosses, not their jobs.” Well, statistics reveal that a lot of dissatisfaction and dysfunction in the workforce comes from poor leadership.

GoRemotely reported that 79% of employees leave their jobs due to lack of appreciation from employers. Leadership can make or break an entire workforce, so essentially this is the most important skill for companies to be investing in! From change management to mental wellness and strategic management, every single department is impacted by leaders.

The workforce, especially people in younger generations, is asking for more from leaders. It’s asking for leaders to create a happy work environment as well as a strategically sound one. Most importantly, it’s asking for leaders to take responsibility for the massive impact every word, action and idea has on a company and its employees.

The Benefits of Leadership Skills Training

Whether it’s for upper management or the entire staff of a company, every person on every level benefits from leadership skills. It might look like simple daily planning and productivity hacks, or a full-on strategic management course. The benefits of such skills include:

  • Improved productivity

  • Fastrack accomplishment of goals

  • Employee retention

  • Improved quality of work and work environment

  • Good communication and improved collaboration

  • More innovation, creativity and vision

  • Practical tools for bringing vision to life

  • Employee self-management which leaves managers more space for high-level strategy

  • Learning how to identify and nurture potential

  • The ability to deal with change and remain adaptable in the face of disruption

  • Improved self-confidence

What makes a good leadership skills course?

If you’re looking into leadership skills courses, first get clear on what the business most needs - do you need to equip your leaders with training in change management? Do your employees need some help with communication skills? Once you know what’s going to most benefit the business, you can identify a good course by:

  • Content-rich - a course needs enough information for people to be able to grasp the concept as well as further reading materials.

  • Real life examples - theory should be backed with examples from the real world. Being able to apply theoretic knowledge to real life is absolutely essential

  • Encourage group interaction - discussion helps us grasp concepts and the opportunity to interact with a group makes the course much more enjoyable

  • Content breakdown - digestible chunks make for much better information retention

  • User friendliness - there are some awesome platforms out there for online course that make content available via apps and super user-friendly websites that track your progress and make locating materials easy. A user-friendly platform really supports productivity and progress!

  • Certificate - if you’re investing the money, graduating from the course with a certificate is valuable and makes completing the course worth it. Certificates are really empowering CV-builders for employees!

Investing in leadership skills training is a must for any healthy workforce. WeGrowSA has discounted access to tons of quality courses that help build leadership skills- be sure to have a look through our library. Leaders define the future of any environment, so let’s take responsibility for making sure they have all the tools they need to secure a great future!

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