Recently, my son finished his Tour of Duty with the Israeli Defence Force. One of the most important skills that my son learns during the time of the military was how to be a team leader. Today, nobody can do everything on their own. Everyone needs to ask for help from time to time. Those who are going to be successful need to learn how to work as a team. When it comes to being a team leader, there are times when does better to lead without standing out. My son has a few insights to share from his time learning how to be a team leader in the military.
Lead By Example
One of the top ways to lead without standing out is to simply lead by example. There are plenty of team leaders who are loud. They bark orders at other people and expect people to respond quickly. The best team leaders have a way to lead silently. They are able to model the behavior they want to see in others.
On the battlefield, leading by example is key. During the heat of the moment, it might be too loud for people to hear what is being said. Therefore, those who are able to lead by example or going to have more success. These are lessons that can be applied to the civilian world as well.
Listen to Others
Too often, team leaders feel like they have all of the answers. The reality is that the best leaders listen to others. They understand that they do not have all the answers. Just because someone might have a higher rank doesn’t mean that other people can’t have great ideas as well. Therefore, great leaders who are able to lead without standing out are going to listen to others. They understand that the best ideas might be a conglomeration of friends for many people. In this fashion, strong team leaders who are able to listen to others are going to be able to place their team members in a position to be successful. A strong team should highlight the strength of its team members while covering for their weaknesses.
Strong Team Leaders Deflect Credit and Accept Blame
Finally, those who lead without standing out are going to be able to deflect credit and accept blame. It is easy to lead by standing out. Team leaders who want to lead by standing out simply take all the credit. Instead, a true leader is able to lead without standing out by deflecting credit to other team members and accepting blame for when things go wrong. This is one of the top ways that team leaders are in the respect of their team members. There is no way a leader is able to lead effectively without the respect of his team members. This is one of the most important points that my son learned in the military.
Leadership Skills Honed in the Military
These are just a few of the most important tips that everyone should keep in mind when it comes to leading teams in the military. The reality is that military service has a lot to teach just about anyone. Those who take the time to hone their leadership skills in the military will be able to transfer them to the civilian world as well. In this fashion, I expect that my son is going to take the lessons he has learned in the military and apply them to his everyday life. I am excited to see what the future holds for him.