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Your Leadership Potential | WBRC Solutions


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Your Leadership Potential

Your Leadership Potential

How to Unleash All Your Leadership Potential

There is a steady flow of information in the form of books, articles, white papers, and training all in the context of  “what is leadership” or “how to develop a leader?” In this article, I will avoid those two questions and write about two others that I believe might be on the minds of a lot of readers and they are:

Why does better leadership make a difference? and

How does better leadership achieve those differences?

Leadership is a highly unique form of human behavior that requires the integration of character, knowledge, and experience. What can you do if you step up and unleash your leadership potential? Change the world.

Your journey to unleashing your leadership potential begins with a greater understanding of self. Discover your personality traits and how they relate to leadership. When we know ourselves, we can maximize our positive traits and become aware of our weaker areas, which helps us to achieve our leadership potential. Once you understand and know yourself, next you must hone your communication skills. These are not limited to your public speaking skills either. This includes your writing style and your body language. Your ability to communicate effectively enhances your ability to improve interpersonal relationships. Another important skill is to learn how to learn. Examine different teaching methods and learning styles to identify how you and those you may lead learn best. This skill will greatly enhance your ability to make decisions and give clear instructions.

An exceptional leader recognizes the value of harnessing the skills and abilities of team members and leads them toward greater efficiency and effectiveness.

Leader is not a title, and leadership is not something you are born into. Leadership is something you develop.

This is what Dr. Ken Blanchard, had to say about good leaders in his book “The Heart of A Leader”: “If you want to know why your people are not performing well, step up to the mirror and take a peek.”

7 Personal Characteristics of a Good Leader

What makes a good leader? What personal qualities are needed for leadership? What characterizes good leadership? Here are seven important personal qualities found in a good leader:

  1. A good leader has an exemplary character. It is of utmost importance that a leader is trustworthy to lead others. A leader needs to be trusted and be known to live their life with honesty and integrity.  A good leader walks the talk and in doing so earns the right to have responsibility for others. True authority is born from respect for the good character and trustworthiness of the person who leads.
  2. A good leader is enthusiastic about his/her work or cause and also about his/her role as a leader. People will respond more openly to a person of passion and dedication. Leaders need to be able to be a source of inspiration, and be a motivator towards the required action or cause. Although the responsibilities and roles of a leader may be different, the leader needs to be seen as part of the team working towards the goal. This kind of leader will not be afraid to roll up his/her sleeves and get dirty.
  3. A good leader is confident. In order to lead and set direction, a leader needs to appear confident as a person and in the leadership role. Such a person inspires confidence in others and draws out the trust and best efforts of the team to complete the task well. A leader who conveys confidence towards the proposed objective inspires the best effort from team members.
  4. A leader also needs to function in an orderly and purposeful manner in situations of uncertainty. People look to the leader during times of uncertainty and unfamiliarity and find reassurance and security when the leader portrays confidence and a positive demeanor.


  1. Good leaders are tolerant of ambiguity and remain calm, composed and steadfast to the main purpose. Storms, emotions, and crises come and go and a good leader takes these as part of the journey and keeps a cool head.


  1. A good leader as well as keeping the main goal in focus is able to think analytically. Not only does a good leader view a situation as a whole, but is able to break it down into sub parts for closer inspection. Not only is the goal in view but a good leader can also break it down into manageable steps and make progress towards it.


  1. A good leader is committed to excellence. Second best does not lead to success. The good leader not only maintains high standards, but also is proactive in raising the bar in order to achieve excellence in all areas.

These seven personal characteristics are foundational to good leadership. Some characteristics may be more naturally present in the personality of a leader. However, each of these characteristics can also be developed and strengthened. A good leader whether they naturally possess these qualities or not, will be diligent to consistently develop and strengthen them in

The Best Managers Are Leaders Too

According to a survey by the marketing information company TSN, “Less than one-third of all supervisors and managers are perceived to be strong leaders.” As a result, increasingly larger percentages of our workforce are disengaged. According to the survey:

  • 40% of workers feel disconnected from their employers
  • Two out of every three workers do not identify with or feel motivated to drive their employer’s business goals and objectives
  • 25% of employees are just “showing up to collect a paycheck”

There is a tremendous opportunity for managers and supervisors to set themselves and their companies apart from their competition. So what does it take for a manager to be “perceived as a strong leader?”


  1. Character – People will not follow someone for long if they can’t trust them. Not long ago a well-known CEO was “ousted”after a probe into a personal relationship with a female executive at the same firm. The board concluded that the facts reflected poorly on his judgment and would impair his ability to lead the company. His actions were inconsistent with their code of conduct. Leaders have to be trustworthy to produce sustainable results.
  1. Caring – The old cliché is true, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” When Lou Holtz was coach at Notre Dame, the second question he used to ask every player before being selected to play after “Can I trust you?” was “Do you CARE about me, your teammates, and Notre Dame?” If a player had a selfish motive for being on the team and didn’t care enough to put the team interests first, he didn’t want that young man on the team. He also said if the young man didn’t believe that he could trust the coach and feel cared about in return, he shouldn’t want to be on the team. Leaders show they care about their team personally and professionally.
  1. Commitment – There’s a poster on the gym wall in Clint Eastwood’s movie Pretty Baby that says “Winners do what losers won’t do.” Leaders are like that also. They DO things poor managers won’t do. Arguably, one of the greatest business leaders of our time was Sam Walton. What was his number one rule for business success? COMMIT to your business. Believe in it more than anybody else. I think I overcame every single one of my personal shortcomings by the sheer passion I brought to my work. I don’t know if you’re born with this kind of passion, or if you can learn it. But I do know you need it.
  1. Confidence – Leaders know where they are going and demonstrate by their words and actions that there is no doubt that they will arrive. Furthermore, they make you want to go with them. They instill confidence in you as well. They get you to believe in yourself and your team and to see yourself as winners before it actually occurs. In his book “Reagan on Leadership,”James Strock lists Ronald Reagan’s accomplishments while in office and concludes, “Above all, Reagan restored America’s belief in itself.”
  1. Communication – Leaders have crystal clear compelling visions and communicate those visions repeatedly. In his book “Leadership,” the first principle Rudolph Giuliani shares is his insistence on his routine morning meeting. “I consider it the cornerstone to efficient functioning within any system. We accomplish a great deal during that first hour, in large part because the lines of communication were so clear.”Managers that develop these qualities will create an environment where their team will willingly do what they would not otherwise do.
  2. In addition to letting people also know clearly where they stand, leaders are also exceptional listeners. In his book “Team Bush: Leadership Lessons from the Bush White House,” author Donald Kettl discusses how President Bush “makes sure he listens” to his top advisors. The lesson? ’Make sure you get unfiltered information. Top managers need all sorts of information, good and bad, especially bad. This is why it is crucial to have a mechanism in place that insures a steady stream of information from all quarters.”

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