Leadership for the Future

It’s the last Wednesday of August, and our last post dedicated to leadership.  Don’t worry, there’s lots more leadership talk in the next few months, and years too.  But to wrap this month’s discussion up I thought we should talk about what comes next.  We started the month off talking about acting, guiding and listening, and how important they are for leaders, and today I want to share a few thoughts about the heart and soul of leadership.

Leaders understand fears.  The best leaders are people who truly understand what’s going on in the world and in the lives of those they’re leading.  Leaders aren’t ignorant of the emotions people, including themselves, feel.  Often it’s what they do with those emotions that make them great leaders.

Leadership takes faith.  You can’t delegate tasks and responsibilities and truly be a leader without having faith and confidence in the people you’re working with and in what you’re working to improve.

Leaders understand that money does make the world go ’round, but that leadership is about more than money.  The bottom dollar may convince people about politicians, but that’s not what truly defines a great leader.

Leadership is passion.  If you’re not passionate about the people you’re leading and the cause you’re promoting, no one will listen to you for long.  Passion isn’t always grand and obvious, some of the strongest passions are hidden beneath calm surfaces.

Leaders share hope.  True leaders don’t share false senses of security or try to cover up the bad stuff with optimism.  Rather, they’re able to see a different perspective on the situation and find the possibilities and hope that lie tangled up in problems and challenges.

Leadership begins with you.  The biggest impact you can have on the future is by training the next generation of people to be better leaders than those you’re surrounded with.  Yes, we all need to be better leaders for today, but we have to learn how to better prepare the next generation to be more ready than we were and are.

What about you?  What are your thoughts, hopes and dreams for the future of leadership?

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