Every company or team needs a strong, effective leader to guide them toward success. Growth, creativity, and productivity become stunted without a strong leader to nurture them. How do you know if you’re a good leader? Being one requires more than simply barking out orders or delegating work. There are four basic signs you can use to gauge your performance.

Your Team Trusts You
A good leader must demonstrate integrity. That means working hard, holding yourself accountable, and giving people credit where credit is due. This will lead to your team being confident in your abilities, and if they trust you, they are more likely to follow your example. How do you know if you have their trust? They’re less likely to question you or balk at your suggestions. They’re enthusiastic and listen to what you have to say. They show you respect. If they respect you, they will follow your lead — a company or team’s culture is guided by the person at the top.

You Communicate Well
All effective leaders must have a clear vision for what they’d like to accomplish. A team must be able to see where their leader wants them to go in order to get there. This means communicating your vision to them in a clear, succinct way. If people seem confused, or if their work consistently misses the mark, the problem could be that you’ve failed to get them on the same page as you.

You Form Connections
Do you know anything about the people on your team? You don’t need to be best buddies with them, but you should have a basic connection. If you know absolutely nothing about them, you can’t lead them. Each person has different strengths, weaknesses, and needs. When people feel as if you care about them, they become more likely to listen to you, respect you, and follow your directions. 

You Encourage Growth
No matter what their rank or seniority, people need to feel both respected and stimulated. No one who feels creatively stunted, ignored or bored will produce their best work. Being an effective leader means recognizing when members of your team have hit a wall. You must encourage people to innovate and stretch their skills.