Qualithoughts by: Ross McLeod, Q2 HR Solutions, Contributor

There are many ways in which to cultivate leadership skills, and many leaders and academics throughout history have all added their opinions to the discourse.

These lessons are great to draw from, but the world we live in is rapidly changing and therefore the approach to leading people needs to change to fit the new world order.

The direction in which this is heading is one where leaders need more from those whom they are leading. The question there is; how do you get more from the people you lead?

You empower them.

Now, working in the business world you have probably heard of the concepts of Employee Involvement, Employee Engagement or Employee Empowerment. And although they sound like different concepts, they are all interrelated. If you involve and engage the people whom work for you they will feel empowered as a result.

Within the vast realm of information that exists in the 21st century, it is very easy to get swept up and overwhelmed. For example, while researching for this article, one Google search of “Leadership Skills” resulted in 46,300,000 results. These results ranged from articles and resources on leadership from such places as Forbes, MindTools and the Universtiy of Kent.

And those were results from only the first page.

And every one of these resources has excellent and incredibly legitimate information to offer on how to cultivate and improve leadership skills. However, with so much information it is easy to get distracted from the central idea of Leadership.

And that central idea is that Leadership is all about people. As retired US Naval Admiral, Grace Hopper once said, “You managed things; you lead people”.

This is a philosophy that goes hand in hand with idea of Employee Empowerment.

Because when people are given the benefit of the doubt, more often than not, they rise to the occasion.

Sources:
http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newLDR_50.htm
http://www.forbes.com/sites/tanyaprive/2012/12/19/top-10-qualities-that-make-a-great-leader/
http://www.forbes.com/sites/kevinkruse/2012/10/16/quotes-on-leadership/