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Before you can teach others how to be their best selves, you need to make sure you’re doing your best. Being a leader in your community, your business, or home, means committing yourself to ongoing learning and development. After all, challenges are always evolving, and so too should the approach of those who lead them.
If you’re looking for ways to grow your empathy, creativity, communication, and other key leadership skills, these four learning opportunities are the best place to start, presented to you by AJM Associates.
Books About Leadership
Reading is perhaps the easiest for leaders to commit themselves to lifelong learning. Not only is reading incredibly accessible, but there have been a lot of great books written on leadership. Here are a few more key titles to add to your reading list.
Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss: This book explores the art of negotiation and is a must-read for any leader working with youth.
The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg: Being a leader requires good habits as much as a can-do attitude. The Power of Habit discusses how leaders can steer their habits to achieve success.
The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz: Being a leader can be discouraging at times. Among other leadership topics, this title dives into how to deal with disappointment and keep going.
Online Courses in Leadership and Business
While books examine the big picture of what it means to lead, online courses provide an opportunity for leaders to hone the specific skills they need on the job. On one hand, you could opt for completing a graduate business degree like an MBA online. On the other hand, eLearning Industry notes that open online classes are affordable and only take a few weeks to complete—sometimes even less! That makes leadership courses like these easy to fit into your busy schedule.
Edx: Edx is a fantastic resource for online courses from reputable institutions like MIT and Dartmouth. Unlike other sites that offer free online courses, edX’s classes have a 60% completion rate.
American Management Association: If earning a certificate is important to you, look into the AMA’s courses in leadership, management, and supervisory skills.
Tools to Help
Another vital element of being a leader is knowing when to work smarter, not harder. Sometimes, that means being willing to loosen your control a bit and delegate some tasks that you’re currently handling yourself. After all, sharing the responsibility and work load is a great way to reduce stress, raising not just your happiness but your overall productivity, as well.
Going along with that, even when business is great and profits are sky-high, that’s no harm in taking advantage of free resources! For instance, you can use this invoice generator and add your business name and logo to generate professional, high quality invoices for your clients, and use the money you save to your marketing program.
It might seem counterintuitive for a mentor to need a mentor, but the truth is, everyone benefits from the guidance of someone more experienced. These are three reasons even leaders need someone to turn to.
Life can be lonely at the top. If you feel like you don’t have anyone to lean on in times of stress, a mentor can be a valuable confidant and source of advice.
As a leader, you’re frequently giving feedback, but how often do you receive it? Mentorship teaches leaders how to accept constructive criticism and use it to better themselves.
Mentorship can also help leaders develop confidence. Whether your mentor serves as a coach, cheerleader, or challenger, they’ll help you grow as a person and as a leader.
A leader’s work is never done—not in the community, and not in themselves. By committing yourself to lifelong learning, you can grow as a leader, advance your career, and continue to create positive change in the community you serve.