Three leadership skills to work on in 2018

71158792_M2018 is already underway, but that doesn’t mean it’s too late to set some New Years’ resolutions. If you want to make this year your best year yet as a workplace leader, then you may want to consider focusing on developing these three skills this year:

Verbal Communication. One of the most vital skills needed in our increasingly digitalized workforce ironically has little to do with technology: It’s verbal communication. Known as a “soft skill,” verbal communication is absolutely crucial to develop, as clients want more personalized attention, workplace disputes continue to happen, and younger employees feel disconnected and disengaged from their bosses.

To improve your verbal communication skills this year, consider visiting a local Toastmasters club, watching TED Talks on effective communication, and becoming more mindful of the ways you communicate with those around you.

Time Management. Most of us struggle with organizing our schedules and managing our time effectively at some point during the workweek. Unexpected events, meetings, phone calls, emergencies and other surprising scenarios are just a fact of life, and how you approach these events can greatly influence the impacts they have on your own schedule.

To more effectively manage your time in 2018, consider trying out new scheduling software, categorize meetings and tasks based on their importance to your job/career objectives and making yourself more accessible to your team.

Motivational Qualities. As a workplace leader, you likely already have several important motivational qualities. However, there might be areas where you’re falling short, as seen in instances where employees feel demotivated or depressed in the office, drama or fighting between colleagues occurs more often than it should, and no vision for your department/company is clearly and consistently articulated for other employees to follow.

To work on your own motivational skills this year, directly ask your team: what motivates you? What inspires you? Ask for constructive criticism and demonstrate you’re open to changing if the right ideas arise, because leaders who embody this kind of openness and flexibility are more likely to motivate their employees to be more productive, satisfied with their jobs, and more open and honest with you.