I’ll open up with a statement that I mentioned last week at a speaking engagement that may come as a surprise: leaders are made, not born. I mention this because it’s a natural tendency to believe that those who are successful seem to possess some rare magical gift or extra insight that gives them the slight edge when it comes to making things happen.
I’d like to dispel the myth that leaders are born and not made, and share three key traits most leaders possess which are often overlooked.
#1: They find mentors or other successful leaders and they model their actions
#2: They work hard on constantly improving their skills and rarely settle
#3: They fail often, but they pick themselves much faster, learn from it and keep moving forward
The best leaders study successful behavior and make it an ongoing process to model other great leaders. The successes and failures they’ve already gone through serve not only as inspiration, but also as a cautionary tale to save time and possible frustration when moving ideas from concepts and into successful action.
A quick thank you again to Brian Newberry, Executive Director of Leadership Spokane, for the opportunity to address his new class of leaders last week in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho. It was exciting to share leadership lessons from Trailblazers featured in my new book and the positive feedback after the session was much appreciated. Not only were they a great group, but they clearly showed that they are willing to step up and grow not only themselves but the community and customers they serve.