Have you ever had a supervisor that just didn’t seem very good at supervising? Maybe they were not very pleasant, or maybe they were too friendly. Maybe they were too overbearing or maybe they were too passive. Maybe they never allowed for anyone else’s ideas or maybe they welcomed too many ideas.

Maybe they were constantly over your shoulder watching every move you made or maybe they were never around when you needed them. How many times have you thought to yourself, “I could do their job so much better”?

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What makes a good leader? Perhaps it is someone who falls somewhere in the middle of these examples. Perhaps it is someone who is able to motivate those whom they manage. Perhaps it is someone who understands the work and what it takes to get it done. Perhaps it is someone who is able to be all things at all times to all people. According to Webster’s, a leader is one who has commanding authority or influence.

Therefore a good leader would be one whom does this consistently, is reliable and is deserving of respect. Obviously not everyone is cut out to be a leader. So, whether you are currently a manager, up for a management position, or just think you can do a better job, how would you know if you really are a good leader?

Your Commitment

The first question that should be answered is what is your level of commitment to your job, department, and company? If you are just in the job until something better comes along, then your commitment is probably not very strong.

If you are only there because the pay is pretty good, your commitment is probably not very strong either. By the same token, if you plan on being at your company, sink or swim, your commitment level is probably pretty high. Even if that means that you have to work extra hours and do the work of three people to make sure everything gets done appropriately. Level of commitment is obvious to and affects your supervisees and the work you put out.

Your Title

Do you believe that your importance is based on your job title? For some people changing their job title is enough to encourage or motivate them to do more. They may feel that their value to the company is reflected in their job title.

Like a Special Event Director is somehow different from or more important than an Event Planner. Same job, different title. The level of importance is determined by the person possessing the title and their coworkers, not by the title itself. However, the title does not guarantee good leadership.

Your Skills

Job expertise does not automatically give you leadership expertise.

There are some people that are the best at what they do but they are horrible leaders! Good leadership skills enable a person to motivate others to move towards a common goal. These skills include effective communication, relationship building, decision making, and problem solving. These four basic areas are critical to any good leader.

Your Limitations

Whether is knowledge, skill, resources, or time, as a good leader you should know what are your limitations. There are some limitations that you can not get around, like time. If you don’t have enough, there is no where you can go to get more. In other words, there are only 24 hours in a day, regardless of what you’re to do list looks like. One sign of a good leader is not taking on more than you can handle, as well as knowing when to delegate.

It takes more than just the desire to have a title or to make more money to be a good leader. It takes skill and commitment, as well as the ability to work well with others. It also takes knowing your value, as well as your limitations. So, do you still think you can do a better job? Then go for it!

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