Welcome to my bite size. One of 12 blogs in a new series looking at leadership characteristics.

This week is likely to present you as a leader, or someone others call a leader with many new challenges. What if instead of being tough-minded and focused, firing off directives from the executive floor you went out and around your organisation saying thanks to people? What if at the end of each day you wrote down what you were thankful for in your day and also write down who you had said thanks to?

Research shows gratitude works as an effective leadership intervention. It will help build your presence and will help you specifically over time;

Change your perspective – as your mind will focus on the positives and the possibilities. EnergyYou will lead with more energy and commitment turning setbacks into opportunities. Outward focused you will find creativity to deal with the challenges your organisation faces. Resilience you will become stronger with greater psychological reserves.

Your team will feel valued – You will draw your team around you as they feel attended to. Getting it back – gratitude draws others in as when they start to experience your genuineness.

Discretionary effort emerges – Staff start to know their efforts get noticed and work harder.

Morale will improve – The morale of your workforce will improve as they feel valued.

You become more self-aware –Gratitude given and received slowly opens genuine feedback.

You will integrate your life – Being more at ease talking to the PA, post room staff, your kids.

You will become a leader who has followers.

So, how do you start? Start small, start private and start genuine.

Get a notebook keep it by your bed or in your work bag. Write down each day no more than five things you are grateful for.

Even on a terrible day when the trains late, a key buyer pulls out or your team misses monthly performance you still had a great cup of coffee. If you are a real leader you are deep in the muck and bullets so a great coffee might be the best you can do. But, start there it will get better and bigger if you do this genuinely and for at least a month.

Once you have got the hang of the GRATITUDE LIST then start a second THANK YOU LIST list. Think of the people you said thanks to today, the bus driver, your PA for a great cup of coffee, your deputy who pulled off the deal for the team. Notice this list, you might struggle to put one thank you down at first. You may notice you are rubbish at saying well done or thank you. So leave it blank and tomorrow commit to say one thank you to someone, and mean it.

Keep these two lists for a month then review yourself against the characteristics I listed above. Notice how the lists changed and developed and what you learnt about yourself.

Like my approach? then do contact me to talk at a key event or to coach you or your team. Pictorial of the blog thanks to @engagevisually