Essentials of Leadership

leadership chicago lakefrontSummer being a time of reflection, I’ve been thinking about what I’ve learned over the years about what it takes to be not just a great communicator, but an excellent LEADER.  Here’s what I’ve come up with so far… obviously these are not the only nor all the qualities fabulous leaders should have… they are the elements I see as most crucial at this time.  I’d be most interested in your response, and to hear about your own leadership lists!

L istening – we’re so used to the “talking” points and the official statements and quotes and the presentation skills. It’s more than high time we create “listening” points. Say less, hear more, and remember what others are communicating through their words and actions.

E ngagement – related to dialogue, this is much more. After the conversation, what keeps people connected to you and each other?

A ccountability – leaders know their responsibilities and they truly have the strength, courage, wisdom, and grace to allow the “buck” to stop with them.

D ialogue – one-way communication is out. Fostering conversation (with real listening and real give and take) is here to stay.

E nergy – whether induced by caffeine,Pilates, or simply the high of success, leadership is not for the weak of heart, mind, nor body.

R aison d’être – The “why” is everything. Where is your leadership role taking you in life? What meaning do you feel in this day, this situation? Why do you care? Why should others/
S elf – authenticity is essential. You are not playing a role, you are called to be yourself. Your leadership position demands your unique talents, experiences, perspectives, and the way you put all of that together. Be yourself.

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About Jaya Koilpillai Bohlmann
Global corporate communication, business, and organization behavior executive; author. My blog, DesigningCommunication, offers inspiration, insight, and tips for all professionals who want to express themselves effectively, and lead with integrity.

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