You are the Expert! What do you believe are the fundamentals of leadership?

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How often do you meditate on what you believe are the fundamentals of leadership (i.e., without these qualities, a person cannot be effective as a leader)? Yes, we can read all of the leadership books (and we should); however, it is important that each of us develops personal mantras and decides how we will show up in the leadership space. The definitions of leadership shouldn’t be reduced to cookie cutter responses. Each of us, whether we lead on or off the clock, must decide for ourselves what effective leadership is and grow from the experiences that give us feedback regarding whether our perspectives on leadership get the job done. 

Below is the list of fundamentals that I’m stewing on. If you were to create your own list, what would be on it?

1 – Credibility with stakeholders, genuine commitment to the organization’s mission, and unequivocal support from key figures in the organization.

2 – Courage, integrity, EI (especially self-awareness and relationships that help you see how you are perceived), ability to handle risk, effective communication skills.

3 – Ability to grasp and influence the org’s vision, values, priorities, and goals. Ability to build relationships and trust in order to benefit from others’ knowledge and skills and to build meaningful buy-in for change.

4 – Ability/willingness/desire to regularly (perhaps, constantly) recalibrate and reaffirm the vision, values, priorities & goals.

5 – Ability to SWOT the external environment, including the interests and needs of competitors, how other entities directly and indirectly benefit from and are threatened by your business, and how your business. Knowledge of the industry you’re in, adjacent industries, and that of your clients.

6 – Commitment to mutual accountability.

7 – Personal financial reservoir to reduce likelihood of malfeasance and questionable decisions based on fear of personal financial loss (conversely, some research shows that group members become selfish and hard to work with when they need very little from the group of which they are a part). 

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