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Leadership skills are changing... are yours?
by Bob Hooey

If you truly seek to be an effective 21st century leader, a reflective look at this list of leadership styles, activities, or attributes might be in order.

Ask yourself how many of these you exhibit as you seek to lead those who have entrusted you with their concerns? What needs to change?

Responsible: Do you take full responsibility for your actions and decisions? Do you also take responsibility for their results?

Growing: Are you an 'on the grow' leader, who is committed to seeking out new ideas, new methods and new alliances to help serve those you lead? Are you a leader who is also a reader?

Exemplary: Do you walk your talk? Do your motives, actions and attitudes reflect the character you would honestly like to become?

Inspiring: Do you inspire confidence and trust in those who follow you? Can you call them to action, and engage them in solving your mutual challenges?

Efficient: How are you on using your time wisely and the time of those you serve? Do they see you using your time in productive activities on their behalf? Do you have time to fully do your job and meet their needs?

Caring: Do your people know from experience that you care about them? Do you model it? How would they say you demonstrate your caring?

Communicating: How are you at sharing your ideas, at listening to the needs and concerns of your people, and in making sure that you fully understand them? Do you make sure they are well informed about what the challenges you face, and your proposed solutions or changes dealing with those challenges entail?

Goal-oriented: Are you a leader who is effective in setting 'realistic' (SMART) goals, communicating those goals, gathering people to support the attainment of those goals? Are you a leader who achieves the worthwhile goals set for the common good?

Decisive: Can you make an informed decision and take action on that decision quickly? Do you study a challenge to death and continually put off making a decision while waiting for more information? He who hesitates is a manager, not a leader!

Competent: This strikes at the heart of your ability to deliver the goods for your people. Are you competent enough to do the job and do it well?

Unifying: Are you a leader who seeks to include everyone involved and works hard to make sure no-one is excluded? Are you a leader who builds bonds between diverse groups, many with conflicting agendas and viewpoints?

Are you a leader who can earn their trust and allow them to get past their divisiveness, to get behind you in accomplishing something which is for everyone's best interest? Are you a catalyst for commitment and creativity?

Working: Are you a leader who is committed to working on behalf of those who trust you?

A leader who is not afraid to get their hands dirty, to dig in and lead by example, to do what is needed, to get the job done successfully? Are you a leader who sets an energetic pace and is fully engaged on working out the solutions and to engaging people in the partnership of performance in achieving common goals?

Tough list isn't it? But, if you would truly seek to be a 21st century leader these are the skills that will assist you in successfully serving and leading your people.

Anything stand out as areas where you need improvement or additional work on your leadership? Are you willing to change? When will you start?

© Copyright 2003-2005 Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey All rights Reserved. Used with permission of the author.

About the author:
Bob 'Idea Man' Hooey is a productivity strategist and creativity catalyst who regularly writes for North American Consumer and Trade Journals, on-line magazines and company intranets. He is the author of nine books, a mini-book series, four success systems and an e-book series. Bob was the 48th person in the history of Toastmasters International to earn their coveted professional level Accredited Speaker designation.

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