Leaders—are they born or are they made? Everyone has an opinion, and many writers and publications post frequently about what makes a great leader, the qualities of leadership and so on.
But leadership is the x-factor in managing a successful project, and unlike planning, monitoring and reporting, it’s less easily defined. Leadership isn’t exactly a science nor is it an art, but there are major currents running through the topic that allow one to figure out the best course of action.
The following are some of our best blog posts on leadership in 2018 and a couple that we found on the web. Think of it as a crash course in leadership.
Best Blogs Posts on Leadership from ProjectManager.com
There might be more posts on leadership than any other subject matter on our site. That’s because leadership is the life blood that feeds so many aspects of project management. Here are a handful of those printed this year that we’re most proud of.
Leadership vs. Management, What’s the Difference?
To begin, it helps to define leadership against what it’s not. Management isn’t leadership, which tends towards inspiration, motivation and encouragement. Management is more process-oriented, and about controlling people and things.
However, that doesn’t mean that the two aren’t related. Leadership and management are complementary disciplines: to combine both is to benefit both.
In this short video by Jennifer Bridges, PMP, she explores the differences between leadership and management as a way to unite the two topics to create a more persuasive leader and productive manager.
The 25 Most Inspiring Leadership Quotes
Believe it or not, sometimes we like to let others do the talking for us. Who better to teach us about leadership than the great leaders from today and throughout history?
That’s why we are always on the lookout for good quotes. It’s surprising how many there are out there, and how many different types of people have offered their unique wisdom on the subject.
From movie stars to stars of industry, from artists to politicians, leadership has been a key to unlocking their successful careers. Take a moment and dip into the deep waters of leadership wisdom through the ages in our leadership quote selection.
Top 10 Leadership Traits: Do You Have What It Takes to Lead?
Whether leadership is a learned skill or one you’re born with, we can’t say. Probably a little of both. However, we can look in the rearview mirror to track the traits that people who excel at leadership all share.
That’s exactly what we did. We looked at great leadership and parsed it down into the top 10 traits all great leaders have in common. As expected, clear and effective communications and confidence are up there as top traits.
Less obvious, however, are concepts like servant leadership. That sounds as if it’s an oxymoron. How can you serve and lead at the same time? Well, if you’re interested, then you must read the whole post!
How to Manage Better with Transformational Leadership
What is transformational leadership? It’s a theory that states leaders are most efficient when they work with teams to identify the changes that are needed to make improvements on project conditions.
A transformational leader is one who can influence by having teams rally around an ideal, which inspires and motivates them. They are also able to intellectually stimulate the team and work with individual members effectively.
It’s a great way to lead by empowering teams, using their feedback and being transparent, while offering them new challenges to further inspire and motivate them. Read more to see if transformational leadership is for you.
Mastering the Decision-Making Process: A Practical Guide
Leadership isn’t only about inspiring and motivating, of course. There are the more pragmatic matters, such as making decisions, which might be the most important role of a leader.
That’s why we wrote about the decision-making process. In our post, we broke it down into a seven-step process. You identify, collect info, explore options, judge the merit of each, choose the best one, act on it and then review to make sure your decision was the right one.
Decisions are a constant in anything we do, and when we’re leading a project of any sort they’re there, too. But in a project, the decisions we make must be right or else the team, organization and the very project itself can be detrimentally impacted.
Best Blog Posts on Leadership from Around the Web
Like we said, leadership is a popular topic. We don’t have a monopoly on great insights about leadership, which is why we’re always searching for other sites that have great ideas, like these.
Ego Is the Enemy of Good Leadership
There are many myths about leadership. Greatest among them might be that leaders are fueled by strong ego. While an absence of ego is not recommended either, a fine balance must be maintained to keep a leader in check.
Ego, you see, can stand in the way of effective leadership. It can give one a false sense of superiority or just belief that they are aware of what’s going on. But without getting into the trenches, without talking and really listening to their team, they’re acting from an insular position.
That’s dangerous, according to the Harvard Business Review, which published a fine article on the problems of leading with an unchecked ego. Read more to learn about why the ego’s desire for fame, fortune and influence is something that all successful leaders much manage.
8 Essential Qualities That Define Great Leadership
Forbes has an insightful article on what defines a great leader. The post notes that great leaders inspire their teams to achieve great things. That’s the belief of Daniel Wang, who created Loopring Protocol and is the founder of the Loopring Foundation, whose ideas are collected in the piece.
Some of those ideas are about having sincere enthusiasm. Teams can tell when you’re just dialing it in. Sincerity is part of being a leader with integrity. Those qualities instill loyalty in teams as long as the leader is loyal in turn to their teams.
There are other qualities, of course, from soft to hard skills, all of which are worth familiarizing yourself with. No matter how long you’ve been a leader or how knowledgeable you think you might be, any great leader is never complacent.
Great leaders know many things, and one of those is the boundaries of their limitations. No one can do everything, and everyone needs tools to do what they do better. ProjectManager.com is a cloud-based project management software that delivers real-time dashboards and online Gantt charts to make managing any project easier and more productive. See how by taking this free 30-day trial today.