Leadership

What makes a Leader? 

This idea has been playing on my mind as we have just set the dates for the next NLP Train the Trainer. My goal is to create leaders in the field of Neuro-Linguistic Programming.

 

The leadership learning process is a lengthy one and proceeds in somewhat the following way:

  • genes and early childhood experiences provide the predisposition for leadership
  • a liberal-arts education lays the broad foundation of knowledge
  • experience provides the wisdom that comes from putting knowledge to use
  • training puts the shine on behaviour in specific areas such as communication

If you happen to be missing some genes or some early childhood experiences, if you didn’t major in one of the liberal arts, if your worldly experiences haven’t been that worldly, or if the training you’ve taken hasn’t been that good, take heart.

It doesn’t mean that you won’t be able to lead.  When it comes to leadership, it’s the whole of you that matters, not the bits and pieces

The Guru Guide  – Joseph Boyett and Jimmie Boyett

Warren Bennis’s basic ingredients of leadership…

Basic ingredient What it means
Guiding vision You have a clear idea of what you want to do-professionally and personally-and the strength to persist in the face of setbacks., even failures
Passion You have an underlying passion for the promises of life, combined with a very particular passion for a vocation, a profession, a course of action.  You love what you do
Integrity Your integrity is derived from self-knowledge, candor and maturity.  You know your strengths and weaknesses, are true to your principles and have learned from experience how to learn from work with others
Trust You have earned people’s trust
Curiosity You wonder about everything and want to learn as much as you can
Daring

You are willing to take risks, experiment and try new things

Warren Bennis, On Becoming A Leader

Burt Nanu’s seven megaskills of leadership

Megaskill What it means
Farsightedness You keep your eyes firmly fixed on the far horizon, even as you take steps toward it
Mastery of change You regulate the speed, direction and rhythm of change in the organization so that it’s growth and evolution matches the external pace of events
Organisation design You are an institution builder whose legacy is an organization capable of success in realizing the desired vision
Anticipatory learning You are a lifelong learner who is committed to promoting organizational learning
Initiative You demonstrate an ability to make things happen
Master of interdependence You inspire others  to share ideas and trust each other, to communicate well and frequently and to seek collaborative solutions to problems
High standards of integrity

You are fair, honest, tolerant, dependable, caring, open, loyal and committed to the best traditions of the past

Burt Nanus, The Leader’s Edge: The Seven Keys to Leadership in a Turbulent World

James O’Tooles characteristics of value-based leaders

Characteristic

What it means

Integrity

You never lose sight of your goals or compromise your principles.  You are simultaneously principled and pragmatic

Trust

You reflect the values and aspirations of your followers.  You accept leadership as a responsibility, not a privilege.  You serve.

Listening

You listen to the people you serve, but you are not a prisoner of public opinion.  You encourage dissenting opinions among your advisors.  You test ideas, explore all sides of issues, and air the full range of opinion.

Respect for followers

You are a leader of leaders.  You are pragmatic to your core but believe passionately in what you say and do.

James O’Toole, Leading Change: The Argument for Values-Based leadership

Stephen Covey’s eight discernible characteristics of principle-centered leaders

Characteristic

what it means

Continual learning

You seek training, take classes, listen, ask questions

Service orientation

You see life as a mission, not as a career

Radiate positive energy

You are cheerful, pleasant, happy, optimistic, positive, upbeat, enthusiastic, hopeful and you believe in people

Believe in other people

You don’t overact to negative behaviours, don’t carry grudges and don’t label, stereotype or prejudge people

Lead a balanced life

You are balanced, temperate, moderate, wise, sensible, simple, direct, non-manipulative, physically active, socially active and well read.  You are not a zealot, fanatic, martyr or addict.  You don’t brood.  You take praise and blame proportionately and are genuinely happy for other’s successes

See life as an adventure

You are courageous, unflappable, totally  flexible explorer who savours life

Synergise

You are a productive, smart working change catalyst

Engage in physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual exercise for self-renewal

You engage in aerobic exercise.  You like reading, writing and creative problem solving.  You are emotional but patient.  You listen with empathy and show unconditional love.  You pray, meditate, fast and read scripture

 

Stephen R. Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change.

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