By Debra Benton (President, Benton Management Resources)
If there are ten traits to being a leader, the first seven – no, the first eight – would be confidence.
With confidence, you hire and develop the right people because you aren’t jealous of the abilities of others. Differing opinions get voiced because folks aren’t apprehensive of your insecurities.
You’ll make decisions sooner because advancement, not fear of failure, is the driving force behind your actions. Communication improves because you don’t feel compelled to show how smart you are, preferring to listen and hear how smart others are.
What does confidence look like? You:
- Are comfortable in your own skin.
- Hold no delusion about yourself; you can look at yourself objectively and laugh at yourself wholeheartedly.
- Handle whatever hits you no matter how many pressures.
- Feel neither self-conscious nor superior.
- Fail to act embarrassed with what people think about you and shrug off attempts at insults.
- Freely admit imperfection and ignorance in many areas; you listen for better ideas.
- Have pride but don’t act too proud.
- Feel relevant, never irrelevant.
- Don’t need approval.
- Can say “No” without explanation and can take “No” without affront.
- Are complimentary towards others instead of skeptical and jealous.
- Think of yourself less often instead of thinking less of yourself.
To get more confidence do confidence building things: Act brave; it’s not required to be brave. Ask yourself, “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” And if it’s tolerable do it now, not later.
Confidence is a game played between your own two ears; it’s a decision, not a state of being.
With confidence people are drawn to you; they want to be around you, do like you, learn from you, and be highly thought of by you. People are happy to follow you because you are more fun to be around.
Editor’s note: Got a question for our guest blogger? Leave a message in the comments below.
About the guest blogger: Debra Benton is President at Benton Management Resources. Her focus is to “help you work differently and be different at work; to take you from promise to prominence.” Her expertise has given her front-page coverage in The Wall Street Journal and USA Today (Money) and made her a welcome guest on the Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN – and interviewed by Diane Sawyer for CBS. Follow her on Twitter at @debrabenton.