Ray Kroc once said, “The quality of a leader is reflected in the standards they set for themselves.” This is powerful, because too many times a “leader” will expect more from the team than they themselves give. A leader has many roles to play, but what the level at which the leader sits has a great deal to do with the standards they set and expect themselves to maintain. But what does it take to be that kind of leader?
The Importance Of Self Awareness
The only thing more difficult than discovering your faults is discovering your virtues, but both are needed for a leader to be truly self aware. When you are capable of rightly pointing out what you do well and where you can improve, you will be able to start thinking about the standards you need to set for yourself.
Self awareness is a skill that not everyone possesses, so if you are able to understand yourself well, you can use that knowledge to help yourself do better as a leader. Through self awareness, standards can be properly set.
Set A Course For Success
To be the best leader that you can be requires a great deal of effort and foresight. Those who can effectively evaluate themselves and set a course for meaningful change are usually the ones who end up on top, so set yourself on course to achieve success.
Start by defining standards for yourself. Create a spreadsheet and write down all the standards you will hold yourself to. Next, specify what you will do to ensure that those standards are always met.
For example, you want to be sure that you always follow through on opportunities. Great job! Now you must identify what steps you’ll take to ensure that you do this every single time. Maybe you leave yourself a post-it note on your desk to remind yourself that you need to follow up, or you set a memo in your calendar. Maybe you make phone calls every Thursday morning. When you can stick to your own plan, others will take notice.
Be An Example Worth Following
A leader should always be an example for the people around him. When you are committed to maintaining high standards, you are giving the people who work with you a great example to follow as well as a list of standards that they should strive to achieve.
Make sure you are always meeting the high standards you’ve set for yourself, and then you can use those standards to as a guide to work with the team members you are responsible for developing.
When you set high standards for yourself, you are inadvertently setting high standards for your team members as well. Show them how it’s done, and you may become a leader worth following. High standards will be what it takes for all of us to succeed.
What do you think determines the quality of a leader? What high standards do you think are most important for a leader to maintain?