Some believe certain people are just born leaders. Others think an individual can learn to be a leader. Regardless of how you may feel you obtained your leadership skills, there are always ways to enhance your abilities. After all, motivating and inspiring your team to come in every day and do their best work is arguably the single most important aspect of the job.

Effective and compassionate leadership can be learned and then continuously strengthened. Some of our country’s most celebrated business leaders didn’t start out that way. Instead, they matured into their leadership roles. compiled a list of leadership qualities that may inspire you to reevaluate your own leadership abilities and address any issues that might need improvement.

Share Your Core Values

In any business venture, getting the right people on board is crucial. As it turns out, finding the “right” people has to do with communicating to them why you’re doing something, rather than how you’re doing it. This is crucial because any programs you create or long term company goals might change over the years, but your core company values likely won’t. When your core values are clear, it’s easier for people to support you even as specific plans may change.

Listen Selectively

As a leader, you must listen to others, but you will drive yourself crazy if you try to follow every suggestion you’re ever given. Leadership is about deciding whom to listen to and then politely ignoring everyone else. Don’t only look to your own industry as a primary source of guidance; look to the customer and clients you serve. When you stop and listen to your consumer base, you then empower your staff and company with new knowledge and opportunities.

Be Quick With Feedback, Slow With Criticism

We live in complex, competitive times and many employees need constant encouragement. People are inundated with too many tasks and not enough time. Technology and business life can be overwhelming, so it’s important to point out any “wins” no matter how small. And, if you do have to criticize, first think seriously about the overall impact not just to a singular employee but their department as a whole.

Share Your Company’s Vision

Make a career habit of sharing where you’d like to go, even if you don’t have an exact plan for how to get there. This holds true for larger dream projects you’d like to have in the future and for smaller programs you’d like to run next month. You’ll be surprised at how many people want to help you succeed, but the only way they can help is if you’re willing to share with your staff and industry peers where you hope to go.