by Ellen Cook
Many leaders don’t have confidence that they do their jobs well – and many people on their teams agree.
An industry survey has revealed that leaders today are experiencing a crisis of confidence in themselves. Only half of more than 2,800 business leaders surveyed claimed they are well-equipped to lead their organizations in the future. This suggests the growing need for leaders to build their confidence since it can affect not only their personal performance but also that of their team.
Here are some suggestions to build your confidence:
1 – Build your knowledge base. You may or may not need to take the full plunge and earn an Executive MBA. If not, identify the specific knowledge gaps that would make you feel more confident in your role. There are many online courses offered through LinkedIn, Coursera, and others – as well as university-based courses – that can help you fill these gaps.
Because our society is ever-changing, there’s always something new to learn and discover about how to lead your team and develop your leadership skills. If you’re equipped with advanced concepts and skills, you’ll be more prepared and confident to guide your colleagues at work.
2 – Act and look the part. “Dress for success” is a cliché – because it is so often true. Some successful leaders feel that being the “best dressed and best prepared” gives them an edge whenever they walk into a meeting. This can be especially helpful for younger leaders.
In an article on body language, experts shared that even if you don’t feel confident, exhibiting confident body language can significantly boost your self-esteem and make you look like a better leader. Some of these gestures include standing up straight, maintaining eye contact, and keeping your chin up.
3 – Improve your health holistically. The state of your physical health can influence your leadership confidence too. For example, if you’re feeling sickly all the time, you’ll feel like you’re not doing anything productive as a leader, which can affect your confidence levels. That’s why following healthy lifestyle habits, such as eating well and exercising regularly, should also be your priority. Luckily, practicing healthy living is no longer difficult. There are many dietary meal plans available today (for example) which can accommodate your food preferences and help with weight loss.
4 – Set realistic goals. Setting and accomplishing small goals for you and your team can build everyone’s confidence in you and the whole team. As per this post on setting goals without outcome attachment, it’s easy to fall into the trap of defining how you feel about yourself by the outcomes of your work, especially if you’re leading a team who looks up to you. Once you and your team have built up your confidence then you can try experimenting with harder goals.
Build your confidence and engage your team. You don’t have to be magical. Just be prepared and ask others to contribute. It takes a team effort. You can do this!