For the last several weeks, the Young Adult Ministry that I volunteer for has been planning to start leadership training classes. I have been looking forward to them because I’m always interested in attaining information and advice that will result in my personal and professional advancement. Now that the classes have started, I am beginning to see how challenging and rewarding leadership really is. In gaining a deeper understanding of what it means to be a great leader, I have become aware of three components that go into great leadership. They are:
Although broadly defined, curiosity is basically the desire to learn or know about anything. A synonym for it would be inquisitiveness. The reason that you are likely to discover that great leaders are curious about various things in life is because personal and professional growth is oftentimes contingent upon our receptivity to learning more about the world around us. In gaining this information, we have a greater frame of reference that enables us to relate to more people and build the type of rapport and stimulating discourse that makes working with others a productive and positive experience.
Communication is defined as the exchange or imparting of thoughts, information, or opinions. As many leadership experts know, it is a vital skill for leaders to have. This is the case for many reasons, including the fact that one of the most important things that leaders do is communicate their vision to the individuals who are on their team. It is these team members who will work in conjunction with the leader to bring the vision to pass. If the vision is not articulated clearly or dialogue regarding its implementation is not sustained and meaningful, the success of the leader’s organization will always be in jeopardy. This is why communication is almost always the key to success for leaders and thus a great trait that must be developed and continually sharpened.
Although the phrase may sound trite, it is really true that character counts. Some character traits that great leaders tend to have include courage, honesty, and integrity. The possession of great character is important for leaders because they set the standard for the organizations they lead. If they project an attitude or lead a lifestyle marked by flagrant immorality or disregard for established standards of conduct, the entire organization is at risk of replicating these behaviors. Thus if you are planning to be a leader or looking for ways to grow in the leadership position you now hold, consider what you can do to ensure that you maintain or develop good character.
Although being a leader is often fun and exciting, it also involves serious personal work in order to be significant in the long run. With that thought in mind, I think it is important for individuals pursuing leadership positions to think critically about what they can do to make themselves more fit for the title they wish to hold. Whether you are thinking about becoming a leader or already hold a position, examining the list above can help you sharpen your leadership skill set. Good luck! :)