I am often approached by clients requesting leadership training programs. When I probe them to be more specific, they don't always know exactly what they want. They tell me, "We need to develop better leaders at all levels".
There are many factors that impact leadership. In addition to basic knowledge and general (and emotional) intelligence, here are a few key leadership traits:
- Leaders understand the past and focus on the future
- Leaders exude confidence and energy
- Leaders have a positive attitude
- Leaders are good problem solvers
- Leaders are great communicators
Many of these traits are innate, others can be taught. For example, to teach someone to have the right attitude is extremely difficult, not impossible but quite challenging. However, my message is this: If you have potential leaders who are smart, capable, confident and possess the right attitude, invest in improving their communication skills. Communication- public speaking, listening, writing, influencing- can be greatly improved in a short time and taken to new heights. It will make an immediate impact. Potential leaders will gain confidence, see themselves in a stronger leadership role and be perceived as leaders by others.