IT leaders require a specialized skill set that includes a combination of strong management capabilities and exceptional leadership skills. Given the opportunity, anyone can polish their management skills through experience and mentoring. Leadership, on the other hand, is something that’s a little more nuanced.
Being an exceptional IT leader requires the cultivation of specific habits and traits over time. When looking at the numerous habits of leaders, there are seven that standout as being influential in transforming a person with leadership capabilities into a person who leads teams to success.
In leadership it isn’t enough to just speak, you also need to know how to speak to and engage your audience – whether they’re team members, clients or stakeholders. Most of us aren’t born effective communicators but learn the art over time. Top leaders make polishing their communication skills a top priority.
Great leaders, no matter how successful they are, are flawed humans – just like the rest of us. Leaders who are the most influential in their positions recognize this and have a well-cultivated sense of self-awareness that enables them to identify their own strengths and weaknesses before looking for those things in others.
According to global leaders, ethics ranks number one on the list of the most important leadership qualities. IT leaders must always act with integrity, not just in protecting the best interests of the company, but also in communicating and engaging with team members at every level.
Successful IT leadership requires input from multiple directions. Some leaders prefer to maintain an air of unapproachability about them, which is unfortunate because it only damages the potential of their project. The most influential leaders remain approachable and are open to feedback and suggestions that come from all tiers of project management.
Things will go wrong, and somebody has to take the blame when they do. Great leaders aren’t ones to shrink under the pressure of accountability. They don’t try to place the blame onto others and accept their role in how a project proceeds. They also have their team members’ backs when someone comes under fire.
There’s nothing worse for the success of a project than being under the leadership of someone who has yet to learn the value of responsiveness. Your team members have questions and concerns, stakeholders might want answers. Responding to all communications, even those that don’t register on the radar of top importance is something that the most influential leaders are great at.
It goes without saying, but IT project management demands an exceptional level of organization. With so many moving parts, a strong organizational strategy is the fertile soil in which influential leaders grow.
Nurturing Effective Habits in Influential Leaders
Influential leaders are cultivated through experience, time and a passion for what they do best. At PMO Partners, we connect you with the talent your project needs and offer consulting services that help cultivate true leadership habits within your team. Reach out to us at PMO Partners and let’s talk about effective leadership for your IT project.