Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Leadership: A Perennial and Millennial Issue

Leadership is one of the most pressing needs of our time. As the world we live in becomes more complex, and the diversity we represent uncovers a plethora issues needed to be addressed, we need people who can navigate us through the challenges and inspire us to greater things.

Identifying leadership is an art and a science. There are many who may claim to possess the traits of a leader, but few who have the actual ability to lead. It is a unique mix of empathy and confidence; the ability to know yourself and understand others. A leader acts with courage in spite of fear. A leader steps up to the plate when they sense uncertainty in others. They call it as it is when no one else has the guts.

Adam Canwell makes a point that companies typically see leadership as something possessed by a select few. It’s usually a term used to refer to people at the top of the organization and “star players” who have been identified as having potential. But in my experience, leadership applies to everyone, at every level of an organization.

Anyone and everyone is capable of being a leader. These were two of the key findings from Deloitte’s 2015 Global Human Capital Trends survey report.

We should be ecstatic that 53 percent of Millennials aspire to become the leader or a senior executive at their organization. People want to be their best and motivate others to do the same, and the world will be a much better place because of it. The challenge is how we, the leaders of today, guide them towards this achievement. Leadership is teachable, and learnable. There are many different paths.

My advice to aspiring leaders is to become familiar with the approaches, dive into them, and choose the path that best suits your personality and emotional make-up. A great place to start is Bob Seelert’s book Start With the Answer: Wisdom for Aspiring Leaders.

Image source: trustworks.com

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