What Every Manager Should Know About How to See the Talents of Effective Leaders

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An organization of any size, from the family to the department store, the neighborhood grocery store to the largest international corporations, is a reflection of its leadership.

And leadership is only as good as its leaders. What is this thing called "leader"? What constitutes an unusually good or great leader?

Professor John Adair, of Surrey University in England, shared his thoughts on the special talents that set a bona fide leader apart.

"Few leaders," he stated in International Management, "do more than merely coordinate efforts. But the most effective leaders create a sense of esprit de corps, a team spirit that makes even the most arduous or the most humdrum work exciting."

The gist of his piece is that the unusual or great leader has great organizational talents. He also has the ability to inspire others to expend much greater efforts than they would have expended had they been left to their own devices. Both are needed in any true definition of leadership.

Now, if you are a manager, supervisor, or employer, take a good, long look at what you're doing at work.

I encourage evaluating your performance periodically by answering these questions:

* How am I leading?

* Am I leading effectively?

* Do my employees consider me an effective leader?

The answers to these questions are the open doors to where you are and what you have to do to improve your leadership talents. (You may want to take it a step further by having subordinate rate you periodically using these and/or supplementary questions.

However, you can assess your leadership qualities simply by looking at the success of the projects you handle and at the teamwork you have created. Therein lies your answer to your effective leadership.

Remember: When you maximize your potential, everyone wins. When you don't, we all lose.

? Etienne A. Gibbs, MSW

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Etienne A. Gibbs, MSW, Management Consultant and Trainer, conducts seminars, lectures, and writes articles on his theme: ... helping you maximize your potential. He offers management, marketing, and parenting resources at his Maximizing Your Potential blog.

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