Sunday, July 18, 2010

Great Leaders - Common Traits

I consider myself a “student of leadership,” which is my way of recognizing that leadership is a journey and that we must always be expanding our ongoing education in leadership.
Being a better leader and having a richer life is an ongoing search, for the rest of our lives.
That’s why I love reading as much as I can on the subject. I’m fascinated by the stories provided by some of history’s greatest leaders.
There is so much that we can learn from the great leaders that have preceded us, and, from the experiences that shape us as we move forward in pursuit of becoming great leaders, and leaving our mark on the world. We must never stop learning.
There is a common trait that I have found among many of these great people.
Leaders see the world through the eyes of others, they recognize that it isn’t about them, and that the more you take self-interest out of the picture and instead do for others, the more you end up benefiting your own interests, in both the short and long term.
Great leaders inspire others with their passionate commitment to what they believe in. They love what they’re doing, and they’re doing what they love.
A good leadership story has the power to engage hearts and minds. It has these elements:
- Draws on your own past and lessons learned along the way.
- Engages the audience through emotional connection because of its relevance to them.
- Inspires others because it is fuelled by your passion.
- Displays the struggle between your goals and the obstacles you faced in achieving your goals.
- Illustrates with vivid examples.
- Teaches an important lesson.
Our actions, as leaders, can, and indeed must, serve a larger purpose – a societal good that moves us all forward. 
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