Do you have a desire to lead but aren’t quite sure how to develop the necessary skills? Have you ever looked at those in leadership positions and wondered how they got there? Are some people just born with a natural ability to lead, with others left to follow?
These are legitimate questions to consider. While I believe leadership ability is innate, I think leadership skills are learned, developed, and honed over time. I doubt if you will find this supported in any textbook or graduate course, but upon reflecting on years of experience in this area, I’ve concluded the following:
- Exploration leads to both successes and failures.
- Successes and failures build knowledge, experience, wisdom, and character.
- Knowledge, experience, wisdom, and character develop good judgment and confidence.
- Confidence serves as a springboard for more exploration, thereby continuing the cycle of development.
- Over time, this loop births a desire for efficacy.
- A desire for efficacy prompts a need to serve the greater good, which includes helping others to build their own skills.
- Serving the greater good is the epitome of true leadership.
Is this the only path to developing leadership skills? Probably not. There have been multiple books written and entire programs of study devoted to the subject. But I know these statements to be true—I’ve seen them proven out too many times.
Are you wanting to develop your own leadership skills? Are you a mid-level manager with a desire to take your career to the next level? Might you benefit from a mentor or coach? I may be able to help—reach out to me and let’s talk.
Dr. Roberta Ross-Fisher is a national leader in educator preparation, accreditation, online learning, and academic quality assurance. An accomplished presenter, writer, and educator, she currently supports higher education, P-12 schools, and non-profit agencies in areas such as competency-based education, new program design, gap analysis, quality assurance, leadership, outcomes-based assessment, and accreditation through her company, Global Educational Consulting, LLC. She also writes about academic excellence and can be contacted for consultations through her blog site (www.robertarossfisher.com).