How to Develop Wisdom in Leadership
The leaders who make the most money or develop the most inventions are not the leaders who are admired most throughout history. Instead, leaders who show character, integrity, and have a sense of ethics are the ones we continue to talk about. These leaders exhibit wisdom, making the right decisions for the good of all, not just themselves.
Wisdom is easy to identify but is somewhat abstract to define. It may also be easy to see that you do not have wisdom, but it may be difficult to develop it. This article will show you what wisdom in leadership looks like and how to develop it for yourself.
What is Wisdom in Leadership?
Wisdom is a complex characteristic that is hard to define but crucial for decision-making in all aspects of life. Essentially it is the ability to assess situations objectively and take the right action at the right moment. True wisdom requires self-reflection, empathy, compassion, emotional regulation, decisiveness, and acceptance of uncertainty.
Wise leaders make decisions that are best for the company, not necessarily themselves or just a handful of shareholders. They quickly understand situations and people and assess what needs to be done to keep the company working efficiently and successfully. They make decisions to avoid scandal or financial ruin and develop successful business plans to ensure its long-term growth and success.
Wisdom is seen as the equivalent of good judgment or making the right actions, usually due to experience and longevity. However, these factors do not necessarily guarantee wisdom. Many young adults exhibit more wisdom than older generations, and many people with a variety of experiences do not learn from them.
If you’re interested in learning more about wisdom and how to apply it to other areas of your life, then BetterHelp provides ample information and guidance. But, for now, read on to learn how you can develop wisdom as a leader.
How to Develop Wisdom in Leadership
Wise leaders are mindful of their strengths as well as their flaws. They are not narcissistic. They know that mistakes are inevitable and that no one is perfect. Therefore, they do not beat themselves up for their flaws. Instead, they improve where they can and accept the limitations they cannot change.
Far too many leaders think very highly of themselves, which inevitably leads to their downfall. Understanding your weakness and limitations keeps you humble. You can work on those things to improve yourself, but have the awareness that you will never be truly perfect.
Create Conditions For Success
Wise leaders want to see their employees succeed. They want their employees to reach their potential and find satisfaction in the work they do.
Therefore, if you wish to develop wisdom, do whatever you can to set your employees up for success. For example, offer ample training and provide the necessary resources to accomplish their tasks.
Wise leaders also encourage employees to keep pushing the limits of what they can do. They encourage the employees to solve challenging problems independently and make critical decisions. Leaders with wisdom also communicate often with their employees, exhibiting honesty whether the news is good or bad. They also keep the dialogue open to allow the employees to express ideas and opinions without judgment.
Therefore, you should not be dismissive or hostile with your employees. Be a leader but don’t necessarily act like one. In other words, don’t hold your power over your employees. Instead, be their cheerleader and encourage them to keep improving. Furthermore, be open to their thoughts and opinions, as they may have a million-dollar idea that will help the company.
Wise leaders work with integrity. They do not lie, cheat, or manipulate anyone. They are always honest, work hard, and live by an ethical code.
There are too many stories of leaders taking advantage of their position to work less, make more money, and even cheat the system. These leaders are rarely respected in history and often fall from grace in the eyes of the public.
You cannot have wisdom without integrity. You cannot lie to the investors and still be considered a wise leader. You cannot play hooky while your employees are overworked if you wish to develop wisdom. Hold yourself up to high standards, and wisdom will follow.
Pessimists give up before putting in any work. They believe that situations will never work in their favor and therefore don’t even try. Pessimism is draining and contagious; very negative people don’t accomplish much in life and often bring down those around them.
Develop an optimistic mind if you wish to have wisdom. However, this is not blind optimism. Healthy optimism is hope that things will work out and then working hard to achieve that positive outcome. Expecting the situation to improve without any work is foolish.
Wise leaders are lifelong learners. They educate themselves on all aspects of the business and constantly learn new skills that will help their career and the company. When technology updates, they update their skills. When they are given a new role or task with which they have no background, they learn as much as possible and develop the necessary skills.
Wise leaders also learn from experience. Not only do they learn from their past mistakes, failures, and successes, but they learn from those of others as well. They read biographies and histories to prevent making the same mistakes of past leaders who did not have wisdom.
Therefore, if you wish to have wisdom, cultivate a joy of learning and books. There is always something new to learn, and it is often beneficial to your career or business. Remaining static and refusing to develop any skills keeps your company and team static in a world that is constantly changing and adapting. Companies that don’t adapt almost always fail due to the lack of foresight and wisdom.
Marie Miguel has been a writing and research expert for nearly a decade, covering a variety of health-related topics. Currently, she is contributing to the expansion and growth of a free online mental health resource with BetterHelp.com. With an interest and dedication to addressing stigmas associated with mental health, she continues to specifically target subjects related to anxiety and depression.
This article has been published in accordance with Socialnomics’ disclosure policy.