Top 10 Principles of Effective Leadership Communication

January 11th, 2017


At 10x Management, we’re always stressing the importance of positive communication. As part of our ongoing series entitled “With A Little Help from Ving,” we look to the Ving blog to discover ten effective ways to communicate as a leader. Inspire those around you and follow these tips!

Original post by Emily Diorio, Ving Success Rep & Content Creator

We all have someone that comes to mind when thinking of great leaders whether it’s a colleague, a political figure, or someone from your personal life.

Regardless of who these people are, they all exhibit certain traits that set them apart. It’s one thing to lead — but yet another to be a strong, effective, and successful leader (for more on this and how to manage 10x-level talent, check out our upcoming book, Game Changer).

The secret to standing out are these key principles of effective leadership communication that drive collaboration and success. Anyone can take charge, but you need the right tools and skills to be the best. Let’s explore the top 10 principles for great leadership:

10. Openness

Successful leaders communicate with an objective of gaining understanding from the person they are interacting with. Keep an open mind when communicating with your team to see things from their point of view; it will make it easier to explain what you want from them if you put yourself in their mindset.

9. Lead by Example

As a leader, you need to exemplify the qualities that you expect to see in your employees. Instead of telling employees want you want them to do, show them by setting an example. Since leaders are in a position of influence, they need to face obstacles with confidence, determination and a positive attitude because you set the stage for the rest of your team. If you wouldn’t take your own instruction, why should they?

8. Personalization

One thing I’ve always respected about great leaders is their ability to make everyone in a room feel like a VIP. When these people give speeches, they make you feel as if they are speaking directly to you, even though there might be thousands of people in the crowd. On a smaller scale, getting to know your employees on a more personal level and making it a point to say hello in passing can go a long way in getting your team behind your vision.

7. Prioritize

There are a few facets to this principle. First, and most importantly, a strong leader knows that time is valuable and communication can take up a lot of it if conducted poorly. Prioritizing your communications is important because if you waste employee’s time, they’ll be less productive. Communicate exactly what you want from your team by stating the goal of the task, how long you expect it to take, any resources they’ll need, and finally any relevant details that might help streamline the process. Keeping emails short and concise is part of this, as well.

6. Avoid Monologue

Don’t talk TO your team, talk WITH them. People are more receptive to a dialogue-type of communication than if they feel they are being commanded to do something without any chance for their input. Approaching communication this way will help you to gain understanding and insight into the inner workings of your team, which is a valuable thing to know for the future.

5. Clarity

Effective leadership communication is clear and simple. Don’t be vague when discussing what you want from your team, make sure they know exactly what you expect and when you expect it. If they don’t understand what you’re saying to them they won’t know what they should be doing. You lose productivity when they have to circle back around to you for clarification on important information.

4. Trust

One of the most important things a leader must establish for effective communication to take place is trust. If your employees don’t respect you, they won’t listen to you. Simple as that.

3. Critique

Feedback is one of the most valuable things you can give to your employees (other than a paycheck). The key is to give praise when it’s due, and give constructive criticism where it’s applicable. It’s true what they say, you really do attract more bees with honey than you do with vinegar. Think of feedback as a positive means to a more productive end. Employees will appreciate that you took the time to tell them how they can improve, and that you see potential in them.

2. Listen

Communication is a two way street. You have to be a good listener before you can start talking. Listen to the interests of your team and get a feel for their perspective on how to achieve goals. Effective listening will help you build relationships, solve problems, ensure understanding, and improve accuracy. Taking a moment to listen will help you waste less time in the long run, making you more productive.

1. Inspire

The number one principle of effective leadership communication is the ability to inspire those around you. As a leader, you have a vision of success that you want to achieve with the help of your team. It’s up to you to rally your team around that goal and help them embrace the vision, too. Inspiration is the fuel that keeps everyone working hard toward the ultimate goal, and great leaders know this. Think again of those great leaders we brought to mind earlier, and I bet you’re familiar with at least a few inspirational quotes attributed to them. Inspiration is the motivation behind success. Inspire greatness today for success tomorrow.

Have other tips for effective communication to add to our list? Share your suggestions in the comments section, we’d love to hear your thoughts.

Like this post? You might enjoy reading How to Write Actionable Emails at Work