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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Positive Leadership: Why Leaders Must Have A Positive Attitude

You don’t have to have a positive attitude to have a leadership role, and you don’t even have to have it to lead. But you definitely must have a positive attitude if you want to lead successfully for an extended period of time.

Positive attitude means an expectancy that good things will generally happen, (and that even when they don’t there is likely good that will be found in the challenges) and a healthy optimism for the future for your company, team, yourself and life in general.

Here are three major reasons having a positive attitude is important for you as a leader.

You are in the energy business

As a leader, whatever industry you are in, you are in the energy business. Remember that whatever energy you bring to your work will be noticed and amplified. Your personal attitude is a huge part of the energy you inject into your team and organisation. If you aren’t injecting positive, supportive and encouraging thoughts and actions into the workplace, it is far less likely that others will either. You can’t rely on someone else to do this for you—you are a leader.

Positive attracts

If you think you are leading, but no one is following, you are just taking a walk. If you want to or need to lead, you need to have others choose to follow. Think about the people that you most want to be around, those whom you are attracted to. Are those people more positive or negative? Do you want to choose to spend time with people who think the future looks dim or bright? Would you rather be around people who encourage and are proactive, or those who focus on the negative and who think about the future with a “gloom and doom” approach? Positive attitude and energy are attractive. The best leaders know this and that is a major reason they lead successfully.

Positive creates productivity

Are you more productive in a negative or a positive environment? In which atmosphere are you likely to be more creative, engaged and get more done?  If you are looking for a numbers driven, bottom line reason why a positive attitude matters in your organisation, look no further than productivity.  People will get more done in a positive environment.

If you are wondering if it is possible for one person to change the attitude or environment in an organization, and therefore have the impact just described, remember this: Enthusiasm is contagious, and someone must inject that energy into a group, team or organisation in order for it to grow. Positive energy doesn’t happen automatically, someone must start. As in many other ways, leaders must go first.

You must go first.

If you want to be a more successful leader and have a bigger impact on those you lead and serve, focus on your attitude and know that as you change your thinking and your attitude, your actions will start to change your work, your team and your world.