The Reluctant Leader – How to Build Your Leadership Confidence

Although leadership is rewarding, it can also be challenging if you don’t have the needed confidence. It’s essential to believe in yourself, aside from the other common leadership skills. Statistics reveal that about 82% of organizational leaders think it’s vital to have a clear sense of purpose to succeed. Though many people believe that confidence is the primary trait of a successful leader, that’s not all there is to it. Perhaps you are aspiring to lead one day and wondering how to build your confidence. In that case, here are some practical ways to do so.

  1. Know your strengths

To be an effective and confident leader, you need to identify your strengths and be aware of what you’re good at to develop them further. Doing so will help you understand why you stand out and give you the boost you need to lead others confidently. It will also help you know which areas you can teach and guide your followers while identifying which aspects you can work on to improve your skills and self-awareness. Aside from personal reflections and self-assessment to identify your main strengths, you can also ask for feedback from others to determine what your strong points are and which areas you need to focus on to get better.  

  1. Learn more about leadership

As a leader, you can never learn enough. One great way to build your leadership confidence is to understand more about leadership skills and improve as a leader. Fortunately, you can do this in many ways, such as taking leadership courses online, drawing inspiration from other successful leaders, or reading wide on leadership resources. Resources such as Hello Coach will help you develop yourself as you prepare yourself for leadership. 

Practice speaking till you get the hang of it

You’ll probably spearhead several discussions and give a couple of speeches during your leadership role. Therefore, it’s vital to develop your speaking skills to communicate confidently with others, sustain their attention and motivate them towards a common goal. It doesn’t matter if you’re not a natural public speaker, as you can always learn. You can start by practicing in front of your mirror or with friends or family to gain helpful feedback, identify what needs improvement and how people relate to your body language. Developing your speaking skills takes time, and you need to be patient with yourself.

You can also try recording your voice so you can spot any unhealthy speaking habits. For example,  constant repetition, speaking too slowly or quickly, or phrases that communicate to your listeners that you’re nervous should be corrected.  By all means, don’t give up if you make a mistake, as constant practice will make you an eloquent speaker. 

  1. Connect with other leaders

Networking is a great way to build your leadership confidence, as it surrounds you with positive people and fellow leaders who inspire you to be your best. Whether in person or online via platforms such as LinkedIn, connecting with other leaders builds your circle and expands your knowledge. Meeting up with other leaders will also enable you to learn from their stories and realize that you’re not alone when you make some mistakes. Asking others for help when you need it doesn’t make you a weak leader but rather lets others know that you’re human and appreciate others’ input.

As you network with other leaders, you can also mentor others to impact and build them up. Doing this will position you to coach others, contribute to their personal growth and develop your confidence and sense of fulfillment.

  1. Work on your posture

Believe it or not, good posture contributes to your overall appearance as a confident leader and inspires others to listen to you. Bad posture not only affects your health but also lowers your self-esteem in the long run. Therefore, it’s best to avoid practices such as stooping, slumping your shoulders, etc., as these could convey that you’re nervous or don’t have a clear sense of purpose. Whenever you find yourself slouching, make a conscious effort to stand up straight with your head up. Regular exercises such as yoga or simple stretches can also help improve your posture and influence your body language positively.

These practical tips will help you transition from a reluctant leader to a positive one. Remember to speak positively to yourself constantly, reminding yourself that you’re unique and good at what you do. Having a positive mindset will help motivate you and make you an even better leader.