“There are 3 kinds of people: those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and those who wonder what happened.” ~Author unknown.
Vince Lombardi famously said leaders aren’t born, they are made.
Leaders are often associated with natural charisma, confidence, dazzling social intelligence, insight, intuition, courage, compelling communication, a zest for change, and vision that allows them to set their sights on “things” then make them merit attention.
While these traits may seem natural most can be learned.
1. Charisma: In her book, The Charisma Myth, Olivia Fox Cabane, shares anecdotes and research illustrating how elements of charisma are learned. She reveals how specific behaviors such as the ability to be fully present in a moment can help individuals develop their personal charisma.
2. Confidence: One critical key to confidence is preparation. It’s hard to be confident if you feel like you are walking in the dark. In Zenhabits, Leo Babauta states that you can beat that feeling by preparing yourself as much as possible. Then groom yourself, stand tall, think positive and focus on solutions.
3. Social intelligence: Daniel Goleman, author of Primal Leadership: Realizing the Power of Emotional Intelligence (Harvard Business School, 2002) says the most effective leaders are alike in one crucial way: They all have a high degree of emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence has 5 key components—self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill – the ability to find common ground, build rapport and manage relationships proficiently. While some people are naturally better at this than others, many people don’t understand how to go about it so they make attempts that fall flat, seem fake, or make them annoying and arrogant.
4. Insight: Leaders need technical expertise to win the trust of followers, manage operations, and set strategy but today, being informed is often confused with being smart. Leaders must know how to gather, sort, and structure information, and then connect it in new ways to create insight.
5. Intuition: The right way to lead is not in the data. It is with informed intuitiveness. Empathy for the led is essential and so is listening to that feeling in your gut.
6. Courage: Credibility comes from being first through the door to the unknown. Standing in one place, or stepping back while others take risks to make the frontier safe for others, simply doesn’t cut it. Moving forward is not a leap or a sprint but a plodding process.
7. Communication: The watershed capacity in leadership is unquestionably communication. The powers to inform and persuade win the battles for hearts and minds. The process of compelling communication can be learned and honed to establish credibility, inform, inspire, unite, direct and rouse followers’ passion.
8. Zest: Leadership requires zest. It is a heavy load and long journey that drains resources so to keep your energy up, you require fitness in all areas — physical, mental, and moral.
9. Vision: Leadership requires vision. Vision requires listening. All can hear but few really listen. And too many people only listen to themselves. Listening to colleagues and collaborators, markets and constituencies, and yourself — all through the endless din of the present, the ominous voices of the past, and the deafening silence boding the future — is vital.
Becoming a good leader is not easy, but by seeking the right knowledge, learning relevant skills and seeking support as you put them into practice then adapting them to different situations, you will have an invaluable asset to offer the world.
That’s where ELEO comes in. ELEO is focused on inspiring and equipping entrepreneurs to lead. On Saturday, July 26th ELEO is hosting a one-day conference in San Jose, California.
It will be a gathering of great minds with the goal of providing practical advice on how to lead a company or organization with lessons from experienced leaders including top venture capitalists, Fortune 500 CEOs, serial entrepreneurs and everyone in-between.
Space is limited so register today. http://eleoconference.com