Stating that inspirational leaders in business change the world may seem a little over the top, but when looked at in detail that is exactly what they do. Think of your world today without the existence of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and many more and it would be an entirely different experience. You probably wouldn’t be reading this for a start. To inspire is one of humanities greatest traits. Truly great inspirational leaders will bring out the best in people, sometimes creating staff members who are far better at the job than the leaders themselves. This ability to spot potential and inspire it to greatness is what separates the good from the great in management.
Here in Vietnam inspirational leaders are driving the economy forward at an amazing rate and pushing the country to the very forefront of Asian business. One excellent example here is Nguyen Thi Phuong Thao, President, and CEO of VietJet Air (image: Mads Monsen). After studying finance and economics in Moscow, she developed a portfolio of business interests, including VietJet and Sovico Holdings. She has become the countries first self-made female billionaire and is inspiring young girls and women in the country to reach their full potential. Forbes ranked her number 44 on their list of the world’s most powerful women.
The Importance of an Inspirational Leader
We are living in the world of social media and all the good and bad that comes with that. Of course, there are many advantages: promoting your brand easily and inexpensively; reaching a global audience with ease, and researching topics of interest whilst checking out the opposition. However, social media also means that one disgruntled employee can make more noise than ever before. This alone makes being an inspirational leader of paramount importance. Getting the best out of your workers by inspiration rather than heavy-handed means, generally ensures that they are with you all the way.
When it comes to growing your company an inspirational leader can make a huge difference. To use Apple as an example again, even after the incredibly charismatic Steve Jobs, the company managed to again choose the right man in Tim Cook to succeed him. When he took over, Apple was not in the World’s top 10 biggest companies, two years later they were number 1. Cook managed this in his own inimitable style. Less of a public figure than Jobs, he is nonetheless a charismatic and inspirational leader of the highest order.
An inspired workforce will be genuinely dedicated to your company, they’ll take responsibility for helping others, they will meet their obligations and most important of all they will be more productive.
How to Inspire Your Workforce
Contrary to popular belief an inspirational leader is not born but created. It is sometimes difficult to recognize as there is not simply one archetypal personality that inspires. What they all have in common though, is a fundamental ability to concentrate on their strengths. Some achieve it with humor, others with honesty, empathy, intelligence, vision, focus or all of the above, plus many more traits. Workers are not stupid and they can see if someone is faking it. By remaining true to yourself, you will gain trust far more quickly than pretending to be something you are not.
Of course, being good at your job is of huge importance. It has been shown that being in the top ten achievers in your peer group will almost double your chances of being regarded as inspirational. An ability to make people feel at ease when communicating with them is also another important factor. Former president of America Bill Clinton is often described as making everyone he spoke to feel important and the center of his attention, even if the conversation was a mere few moments long.
Here in Southeast Asia inspirational leadership is even more important than in the West. In a culture where loss of face is hugely important and detrimental, it is absolutely necessary to inspire rather than criticize in order to get results. The great Eastern philosopher Confucius named three important keys to be an inspirational leader: Above all be virtuous, rule wisely and fairly, and think, then act decisively.
So what’s stopping You?
There is no time like the present. If you think you have what it takes to be a truly inspirational leader than go for it. People don’t normally leave companies; they leave bosses. Apply for that leadership job now and put your strengths to great use. If you have the experience of the job, then leadership experience should come naturally. People working under you will naturally value your experience and expertise, leaning on that you can start inspiring. Be true to your core beliefs, be passionate, make sacrifices, always be there for them and recognize that a strong team is always better than a strong group of individuals.
It is beyond doubt that an inspirational leader can have an enormous impact on the growth and success of any company. If you think you could fulfill the role then you should start immediately towards achieving it. Or if your company is in need of such a person then what is holding you back? Productivity will increase, the workforce will be more driven and contented and your competitors will look on enviously as your company streaks ahead.
If you feel you have what it takes or are looking to recruit someone who has, why not get in touch with us here at RGF Executive Search Vietnam. To simply register a vacancy with us, follow this link. We are always ready to sit down and discuss things with you in a professional and confidential setting.
About the Author
Following a highly successful 25-year career as a singer/songwriter and musician, Keith pulled out of the rat race and moved to Southeast Asia in 2008. First living in Thailand, he moved to Cambodia and then relocated to Ho Chi Minh City in early 2013.
Keith has had work published in magazines and websites in the UK, Europe, USA, Australia, and Asia. He has written for the BBC and has appeared on TV and radio in many different countries. His great loves are music and travel, but he writes on a whole range of subjects.