Executive Coaching Tips for Improving Leadership Skills

Skill as a leader is not an inborn, accidental trait. Great leaders may make it seem easy to lead, but behind their polish is conscious effort to be better guides and serve as an example for their teams.  Toward that end, here are four executive coaching tips for improving your leadership skills.

Maintain A Positive Attitude

The power of positive thinking may seem like feel-good philosophy to some, but a positive attitude has power in more ways than one.  It helps you to provide your subordinates and followers with hope.  It keeps you and your team from falling into patterns of negativity.  It also helps you think optimistically and look for the upside in the world around you.

With businesses facing continual challenges, it can be easy to wallow in negativity.  Not only is this personally unattractive, but it can negatively affect the mindset and productivity of those around you.  To be a better leader, look to maintain a positive attitude.

Plan For Success Daily

Success takes time, planning, and preparation.  Just as if you were a business, setting goals and making plans once a year and then leaving the plans in a drawer won’t work out.  You need to plan for your success and that of your team on a daily basis.

Some like to do it first thing in the morning, while others prefer to do their planning at the end of the day for the day ahead.  Either way, what unites leaders is a sense of purpose, direction, and control over the future.  By setting aside a few minutes daily to plan for successful outcomes and progress toward goals, you ensure more gets done and that you and your team are headed in the right direction.

Those who are interested in an academic program of study in leadership might consider a masters in organizational development and leadership at an accredited university, for example, SJU Online.

Share Responsibility

Good leaders aren’t obsessed with who is getting the credit for any one project; they’re more interested in seeing goals met.  By dropping the focus on you and shifting it to your team and the common results you are after, you enhance your leadership skills in the eyes of management and your peers.

Great leaders are not selfish.  Cultivating a mindset of group success elevates everyone around you, and enhances your team’s ability to get things done.

Leaders are needed at every position for a business to truly be successful.  Leadership and good examples are needed from the CEO all the way to the entry-level newcomer.  Degrees won’t completely prepare you, though degrees like a MBA or Masters Degree Human Resources, will allow you more opportunities to further your knowledge base.  Most instincts are innate and some say the best leaders have it in their genes, but taking every chance you get to learn more is a fail-proof strategy.

Compliment And Encourage Others

As a final means of improving your leadership skills, take time to regularly compliment and encourage others.  Leaders are known for their ability to recognize talent and draw out success.  Choose one team member or group daily to find something uplifting or encouraging to share.

In a hard, grinding economic environment, small bright spots like a compliment or kind word stand out.  Since few make the time to be so considerate and mindful, it helps to separate you from the pack.  As you examine those around you for items worthy of praise or jobs where encouragement will be helpful, you cultivate a mindset of awareness of your surroundings and work culture, which will help you continue to improve your leadership abilities.


  1. “Good leaders aren’t obsessed with who is getting the credit for any one project; they’re more interested in seeing goals met.” This is the best advice. People like getting credit and that includes the people below the leaders. When a leader is not obsessed about receiving all the credit, more is done. A great leader will allow others to take credit and be satisfied the goals were met.

  2. nice!

  3. Another great article! Not only is it important to have a positive attitude but your team will even try to gauge what kind of mood you are in and if you are having a good or bad day. Your attitudes and behaviors are always being watched so set the example you, as a leader, want to see your team demonstrate. In addition, one question you can ask your team members is “How can I help you do your job better?”. You will be amazed by the positive response and ultimate results you get as a TEAM.

    • Thanks Rick. That’s a great question to ask… do everything you can to remove the friction and make everyone’s job easier.

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