Leading others: how to build on potential and help others realise their greatness

American entrepreneur and author, John C. Maxwell once said —

“Leadership is not about titles, positions or flowcharts. It is about one life influencing another. If you’re not making someone else’s life better, then you’re wasting your time. Your job as a leader is to help others to discover and unleash their full potential.” 

This quote highlights the importance of leadership as a means to empower others and help them achieve their goals, rather than simply exerting control or authority over them.

Leadership is about inspiring the potential in others to become the best version of themselves. 

When individuals are all working within their zones of genius and feeling confident in their competence, organisations see improved productivity, increased team morale and lower staff turnover. 

So as a leader, how do you inspire potential? Here are 5 things you can do to support someone to grow and prosper in their roles. 

  1. Give constructive, not critical feedback

Feedback is an essential tool for helping team members grow and develop. A good leader should provide regular, constructive feedback that is specific, actionable, and delivered in a respectful manner. This helps team members to recognise their strengths and weaknesses and identify areas for improvement.

  1. Set clear expectations

Leaders should set clear expectations for their team members and provide them with the necessary resources and support to achieve their goals. Clear expectations help team members to focus their efforts and ensure that they are working towards a common goal.

  1. Provide opportunities for growth and development

Leaders should provide team members with opportunities for growth and development, such as training, mentoring, and job shadowing. This helps team members to develop new skills and knowledge, which can be applied to their current role and future career growth.

  1. Recognise and reward success

Leaders should recognize and reward team members for their achievements and contributions. Recognition and rewards can come in many forms, such as public recognition, bonuses, promotions, or additional responsibilities. Celebrating successes helps to create a positive culture and encourages team members to continue to strive for excellence.

  1. Lead by example

Leaders should lead by example and demonstrate the behaviours and attitudes they want to see in their team members. This includes being accountable, showing respect, and having a positive attitude. By modelling these behaviours, leaders can inspire their team members to do the same and create a culture of excellence.