Build future-ready leadership skills

28 Leadership Skills for Future-Ready Leaders

Leadership skills enable individuals to guide, motivate, and inspire teams, facilitating the achievement of collective goals while fostering a positive and productive environment. The development of leadership skills is vital because it empowers individuals to make informed decisions, manage resources efficiently, and navigate challenges effectively.

Moreover, strong leadership fosters trust, promotes collaboration, and drives innovation, which is crucial for the sustained success and growth of any organization or initiative.

Effective Leadership

I began my leadership training company in 2004, already immersed in many leadership roles.

I studied the leadership principles taught by John Maxwell and Jack Welch. My first influence were Og Mandino, Dale Carnegie, and Napoleon Hill. Later, I learned the teachings of Jim Collins, Albert Bandura, and Ram Charan.

I’ve met many passionate leaders both in the public and private sectors.

Yet, through the years, I observed that passion alone wouldn’t suffice.

I recall conducting supervisory training for a group from a government agency who, after 17 years, were just attending their first leadership training. They said they lacked the confidence to lead, for though they were experts in their fields, they did not know how to lead people.

This emphasized to me the crucial role that leadership skills play in our growth.

What are leadership skills?

Leadership skills are specific abilities and knowledge sets that allow you to guide, motivate, and collaborate with others effectively. These range from decision-making abilities, communication strategies, to conflict resolution techniques, enabling you to lead your team toward achieving common goals.

Understanding Effective Leadership

True leadership transcends mere management. It’s about navigating a team to success, establishing trust, fostering a positive work environment, and promoting both personal and professional growth among team members.

The Importance of Leadership Skills

A leader’s foundation is built on these vital skills. Think of them as the toolkit that prepares leaders to face challenges, motivate their teams, and craft a vision for success.

Throughout my journey, I’ve encountered numerous leaders. Many possess some or even all of these 28 skills. My mission has been to share these insights, aiming to educate and inspire. Join me in this endeavor to enrich our leadership capacities.

leadership skills

Develop Leadership Skills

Leading is an art, and like any artist, a leader needs the right set of tools – or skills – to create their masterpiece. I present these 28 skills for effective leadership, a diverse range of capabilities that can help a leader bring out the best in themselves and their team.

However, the relevance of these skills is not a one-size-fits-all scenario. It’s as unique as your leadership journey, rooted in what you aspire to achieve as a leader.

Exploring these 28 skills is an invitation to a journey of growth and discovery.

Perhaps you see a skill that resonates with you, one that mirrors your leadership style. Maybe you’ll discover skills you’ve never considered before. I encourage you to study them, delve into their nuances, and understand their impact on leadership.

The most crucial step, however, is application.

These skills, once understood, are to be applied and practiced. Over time, they become a part of your leadership DNA, influencing your decisions and interactions.

In this guide, I’ll provide you with some tips on how to cultivate these skills. Remember, it’s not about mastering all 28 skills. It’s about picking the ones that align with your leadership goals and dedicating the effort to sharpen them.

Your journey to becoming an effective leader begins with the choice to explore, learn, and grow.

Accountability

Picture King Louis XVI of France, a historical example of a leader lacking in the crucial skill of accountability. Despite his subjects starving, he reveled in luxury. When crises emerged, he shifted blame instead of owning up to his failings, an alarming absence of accountability.

Accountability, at its core, is the readiness to accept responsibility for one’s actions. It means acknowledging missteps, learning from them, and taking steps toward improvement. As one of the essential skills for effective leadership, accountability holds immense significance in the workplace. It fosters trust, enhances a sense of ownership, and compels employees to put their best foot forward.

Accountable individuals stand out.

They own their mistakes, use feedback as a stepping stone for growth, and are committed to personal improvement.

To foster accountability within your team, set clear expectations and offer constructive feedback. Embrace your mistakes, learn from them, and encourage your team to do the same.

To further strengthen accountability, you might consider honing another related skill – Action-Orientation, which we will dive into later. This skill can help you turn learning experiences into actionable change.

Here’s a challenge for you: This week, pinpoint an area in your leadership where you could exhibit more accountability. What improvements can you make? What actions can you take?

Further your leadership skills training with resources like “Climbing the Accountability Ladder” or “10 Steps to Foster Accountability“. These will provide additional strategies to foster accountability, setting the stage for you to become a more effective leader.

As we move forward on this journey of leadership skills development, let’s now turn our attention to the next crucial skill: Action-Orientation.

Action-Orientation

Take a moment to recall the journey of the great explorer, Christopher Columbus.

Despite facing hurdles like limited funding, skepticism, and even mutiny among his crew, Columbus was driven by a key leadership skill – action orientation. He didn’t wait for ideal conditions or complete certainty; instead, he embraced the spirit of “kusang-palo“, a Filipino value akin to action-orientation. He took calculated risks and pursued his vision, even in the face of uncertainty.

Action-orientation, fundamentally, is the drive to take initiative, make decisions, and follow through with actions. It’s about bringing ideas to life, moving projects forward, and driving change, even when faced with obstacles.

As an essential skill for effective leaders, it fosters progress and instills a sense of momentum within the team.

Action-oriented individuals are those who:

  • Take the initiative and act decisively.
  • Do not get paralyzed by perfection but learn from doing.
  • Comfortably navigate risks, making calculated decisions amid uncertainty.

To encourage an action-oriented mindset within your team, cultivate a culture that values initiative, rewards effort, and learns from mistakes.

This fosters a workplace environment where team members feel empowered to step up, take responsibility, and drive projects forward.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Identify a project or decision that’s been lingering. What’s one step you could take to move it forward? Taking action not only promotes progress but also inspires your team to adopt the same attitude.

To continue enhancing your leadership skills, consider reading “Cultivating an Action-Oriented Team: A Guide for Leaders” or “Overcoming Paralysis by Analysis: Tips for Decisive Leadership”. These resources can offer practical strategies, fostering your development as an effective leader.

Having tackled the realms of accountability and action orientation, let’s navigate to our next crucial leadership skill – Approachability. This skill, while appearing simple on the surface, can profoundly impact your leadership style and team dynamics.

Approachability

Consider the traditional Filipino workplace, where power distance tends to be high and bosses are often seen as distant figures. But what if we challenge this norm?

One of the traits that Filipinos deeply appreciate in their leaders is approachability. Leaders who embody this trait have an open-door policy and make it easy for their team members to express their thoughts, concerns, and ideas.

Approachability is the quality of being friendly and easy to talk to.

Approachability is about fostering an environment where people feel comfortable voicing their thoughts and feelings. This quality is essential in reducing power distance, promoting open communication, and nurturing a more engaged and productive team.

In the context of Filipino culture, it aligns with the cherished values of “pakikisama” (camaraderie) and “pakikibagay” (fitting in).

Approachable leaders can be identified by their:

  • Willingness to listen and understand.
  • Openness to feedback and new ideas.
  • Capacity to make others feel valued and comfortable.

As an approachable leader, you create a workspace where your team feels valued, heard, and encouraged to share. This can be achieved by actively listening, seeking feedback, and making yourself available for discussions.

Here’s your challenge: This week, think about ways you could be more approachable. How can you promote a more open, inclusive communication environment? Taking the first step towards approachability could open doors to a more engaged, collaborative, and productive team.

Further your leadership training journey with insightful reads like “The Approachable Leader: Fostering Open Communication” or “Breaking Down Barriers: Building Approachability in Leadership”. These resources can provide useful tips for enhancing your approachability as a leader.

From accountability to action-orientation, and now to approachability, we’re making headway in our exploration of skills for effective leadership.

Next, we dive into an area that requires careful navigation – managing relationships with bosses.

Boss Relationships

Training programs often focus on how leaders can effectively manage their teams. But what about managing up? How can we manage our relationships with our bosses?

This is an equally crucial skill for effective leaders, and it’s something we often overlook.

Managing boss relationships refers to the ability to work effectively with your superiors, understand their expectations, communicate effectively with them, and manage any potential conflict or disagreement. It’s about navigating the complex dynamics of power and influence to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes.

In many multinational companies, there’s an effort to move away from traditional boss-employee dynamics. While this progressive outlook is commendable, it’s important to consider the existing cultural context.

Employees bring their cultural norms and values into the workplace, and these influence their behavior and interactions. In cultures with a high power distance, for example, managing boss relationships can be particularly challenging and crucial.

A leader who’s skilled in managing boss relationships:

  • Understands their boss’s expectations and communication style.
  • Navigates disagreements or conflicts constructively.
  • Balances the needs of their team with the expectations of their boss.

To improve your skill in managing boss relationships, strive to understand your boss’s expectations, communication style, and decision-making process. Regularly provide updates on your work and ask for feedback. And when conflicts arise, address them constructively and professionally.

Here’s a challenge: this week, take steps to enhance your relationship with your boss. It could be as simple as asking for feedback on a recent project or discussing how you can better align your work with their expectations.

To further develop this important leadership skill, consider reading “Managing Up: How to Forge an Effective Relationship with Those Above You” or “The Art of Influence: Navigating Power Dynamics at Work”. These resources provide practical strategies to help you become an effective leader who can successfully manage relationships with bosses.

Now that we’ve explored the realm of boss relationships, let’s move on to the next skill that effective leaders need to master – Business Acumen. This skill is particularly important as it directly influences the strategic decisions a leader makes.

Business Acumen

Employees might not fully grasp how their business generates revenue. But effective leaders do. They understand how they can add value to their organization, and they continuously seek knowledge about their business.

Among Filipinos, this is encapsulated in the term “utak negosyante” (business-minded). But business acumen goes beyond mindset – it’s a deliberate commitment to understanding and growing the business.

Business acumen is the ability to understand and navigate the financial, strategic, and operational aspects of your organization. It’s about understanding your industry, the competition, and how various factors might impact your business.

With this knowledge, you can make informed decisions that will drive the business forward.

Leaders with strong business acumen:

  • Understand how the organization earns revenue and what drives its profitability.
  • Keep informed about industry trends and competitors.
  • Use this knowledge to make strategic decisions.

To enhance your business acumen, immerse yourself in learning about your industry and organization. Read company reports, attend industry conferences, talk to experts, and constantly keep abreast of industry news.

Take the initiative to understand how your role contributes to the company’s revenue.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Choose one aspect of your business you’re less familiar with and dedicate time to learn more about it. This could be a product, a service, or a part of your company’s strategy.

Consider reading “Understanding Business: A Guide for Leaders” or “The Business-Minded Leader: Strategies for Growth”. These resources will provide further insights into improving your business acumen, a crucial trait for effective leaders.

Having navigated the intricacies of business acumen, let’s dive into our next topic – Career Management. As leaders, managing our careers and helping our team manage theirs is a significant aspect of leadership skills.

Career Management

When it comes to career management, many Filipino leaders shine as inspiring examples. Take the story of Maria Ressa.

Starting as a reporter, Ressa navigated her career strategically, becoming CNN’s bureau chief in Jakarta and Manila, and later co-founding Rappler, one of the Philippines’ leading online news platforms. Ressa’s journey demonstrates proactive career management, where she used her career as a vehicle to reach her goals and make a significant impact.

Career management is the active, strategic approach to directing and controlling your professional path.

It involves setting career goals, developing a plan for achieving them, and continually reviewing and adjusting that plan. As leaders, it’s important to manage our careers and to guide our team members in managing theirs.

Effective leaders in career management:

  • Set clear, long-term career goals and develop strategies to achieve them.
  • Continually update their skills to stay competitive.
  • Help team members define their career goals and support their growth.

If we think of our career as a car, career management is about being the driver instead of the passenger. It’s about taking control of your journey, knowing where you want to go, and planning the best route to get there.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reflect on your career goals. Are they clear? Do you have a plan for achieving them? What steps can you take to steer your career in the desired direction?

For a deeper understanding of career management, consider reading “Steering Your Career: A Guide for Leaders” or “The Career Navigator: Charting Your Path to Success”. These resources can offer insights and strategies to effectively manage your career and help others do the same.

As we’ve discussed accountability, action-orientation, approachability, managing boss relationships, business acumen, and now career management, we continue to delve deeper into our exploration of the 28 skills for effective leadership.

Next, we’ll talk about Caring for Direct Reports – a critical aspect that humanizes the role of leadership.

Caring for Direct Reports

Effective leaders recognize that their direct reports are their most important resource. They understand that caring for these individuals is not just about being kind—it’s about building a supportive environment where people feel valued, heard, and motivated to do their best.

From world-renowned leaders like Richard Branson, who emphasizes the importance of employee happiness, to Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, who champions a culture of empathy, care for direct reports plays a vital role in their leadership styles.

In the Filipino context, the concept of “malasakit sa empleyado” or showing deep concern for employees, is highly valued. Leaders who demonstrate this genuine care for their direct reports earn respect and loyalty, which often leads to higher productivity and morale.

Leaders who effectively care for their direct reports:

  • Show genuine interest in their well-being and professional development.
  • Empower them with the resources they need to succeed.
  • Acknowledge their achievements and provide constructive feedback.

To nurture this skill, take time to check in with your direct reports regularly. Understand their career aspirations, and challenges, and provide guidance when needed. Prioritize their professional development and create a culture of appreciation and constructive feedback.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reach out to your direct reports individually. Engage them in meaningful conversations about their work and aspirations. Show your genuine concern and commitment to their success.

For further reading, consider “Leading with Empathy: Caring for Your Team” or “The Caring Leader: How Compassion Transforms Organizations”. These resources will provide valuable insights into how you can better care for your direct reports.

As we’ve now navigated through the realm of caring for direct reports, we continue our journey in understanding the 28 skills for effective leadership. Up next is Command Skills—a crucial capability that allows leaders to take charge in critical situations.

command skills

Command Skills

While the term “command” may seem old-fashioned in our modern understanding of leadership, it remains a vital skill. Leaders today are celebrated for their ability to inspire and influence.

However, there are moments that call for decisive action and clear directives – and this is where command skills come into play.

These situations often arise in times of crisis or significant change when there’s little room for deliberation or delay.

Consider the case of New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, during the COVID-19 pandemic. She demonstrated remarkable command skills, quickly implementing strict lockdown measures and communicating these decisions with empathy and clarity. Her leadership, combining authority with compassion, earned international praise and led to one of the world’s most effective pandemic responses.

Command skills refer to a leader’s ability to take charge in critical situations, make tough decisions, and guide their team with confidence. It’s about having the courage to step up when necessary, make difficult calls, and inspire others to follow your lead.

Effective leaders with command skills:

  • Make decisive decisions in times of crisis or uncertainty.
  • Communicate clearly and assertively.
  • Inspire trust and confidence in their team during challenging situations.

To enhance your command skills, practice making and communicating decisions under pressure. Learn from leaders who have effectively demonstrated these skills and reflect on how you can incorporate them into your leadership style.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reflect on a challenging situation where you could have exercised better command. What would you do differently?

Consider reading “Leading in Crisis: The Command Skill Guide” or “Decisive Leadership: How to Command in Times of Uncertainty”. These resources can provide valuable insights into building your command skills.

We’ve now explored command skills, a key component in the arsenal of skills for effective leadership. Next up is Conflict Management—an essential ability that empowers leaders to navigate disagreements and ensure a harmonious work environment.

conflict management

Conflict Management

Picture this scenario: You’re a supervisor with two direct reports, Ana and Ben, who have been at odds with each other recently.

Ana: “Ben always disregards my input during team meetings. It’s like he doesn’t value my opinion.”

Ben: “Ana is always nitpicking my work. I feel like she’s out to get me.”

As their supervisor, you step in to manage this conflict. You arrange a meeting to address the issue head-on.

Supervisor: “Ana, Ben, I’ve noticed some tension between you two recently. Let’s talk about it.”

Ana: “I just feel like my ideas are not valued. Every time I propose something in our meetings, Ben dismisses it.”

Ben: “That’s not true, Ana. I simply suggest improvements. I feel you’re always too critical of my work.”

Supervisor: “I see. It sounds like we have a communication issue here. Ana, you want your ideas to be valued. And Ben, you want constructive feedback, not criticism. Let’s find a way to improve our communication so that everyone feels heard and respected.”

The supervisor then arranges a team-building activity and conducts regular feedback sessions to ensure open communication lines. The team’s dynamics improved significantly after that.

Conflict management is a vital skill for effective leaders. It’s about navigating disagreements in the workplace, fostering open communication, and creating a harmonious environment. If you’re keen to learn more about this essential leadership skill, consider attending a conflict management workshop.

Effective leaders with conflict management skills:

  • Acknowledge and address conflicts immediately.
  • Facilitate open and respectful communication.
  • Propose solutions that are fair and agreeable to all parties involved.

Your challenge for the week: Reflect on any ongoing conflicts in your team. How can you use your leadership skills to resolve these conflicts?

To further enhance your conflict management skills, you might want to read “Resolving Conflicts at Work: Ten Strategies for Everyone on the Job” or “The Big Book of Conflict Resolution Games”. These resources will provide you with practical strategies for managing conflicts effectively.

Now that we’ve delved into conflict management, we’ll explore Creativity—a cornerstone skill that empowers effective leaders to innovate and inspire.

creativity

Creativity

Effective leaders inspire not only with their words but also with their ability to think outside the box. One of the hallmarks of great leadership is creativity—the capacity to come up with novel and valuable ideas to drive progress.

Let’s take a look at some examples of business leaders who exemplified creativity in their leadership.

First, there’s Reed Hastings, the co-founder and co-CEO of Netflix. When faced with competition from other movie rental businesses, he conceived the idea of a subscription-based model and streaming platform. This creative approach revolutionized the entertainment industry and set Netflix apart from its competitors.

Then, there’s Elon Musk, the CEO of SpaceX and Tesla. His vision of reusable rockets and electric cars was initially met with skepticism. However, Musk’s creativity and innovative thinking have brought significant advancements in aerospace and automotive industries.

Creativity is essential for effective leaders, allowing them to:

  • Conceive and implement innovative solutions.
  • Inspire others with fresh and unique ideas.
  • Stay competitive by constantly improving and evolving.

To enhance your creativity, consider utilizing tools like mind mapping or brainstorming sessions, which encourage free thinking and the flow of ideas. Engage in activities that expand your thinking, like reading widely or learning new skills.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Try to solve a problem in your workplace using a creative approach. What new solutions can you think of?

Consider reading “Creativity, Inc.: Overcoming the Unseen Forces That Stand in the Way of True Inspiration” by Ed Catmull or “A Whack on the Side of the Head: How You Can Be More Creative” by Roger von Oech for further insights into fostering creativity.

We’ve explored creativity, a key element in the suite of skills for effective leadership. Next, we move on to Customer-focus—a skill that ensures leaders meet and exceed their customer’s needs and expectations.

customer satisfaction

Customer-focus

In the realm of effective leadership, maintaining a customer focus is indispensable. Leaders who prioritize their customers’ needs ensure the longevity and success of their business. They understand that satisfying customers is not just about delivering a product or service—it’s about creating exceptional experiences that customers value and remember.

Amazon, under the leadership of Jeff Bezos, is an excellent example of a company with a strong customer-focus. Bezos has stated that “obsessing over customer experience is the only long-term defensible competitive advantage.” This belief is evident in Amazon’s vast selection, competitive pricing, and user-friendly platforms—all aimed at creating the best possible experience for the customer.

Walt Disney is another leader who showcased an intense focus on his customers. He once said, “Do what you do so well that they will want to see it again and bring their friends.” This statement is a testament to Disney’s commitment to delighting customers, a legacy that continues in the company’s parks, movies, and merchandise.

Effective leaders with a customer-focus:

  • Prioritize the needs and expectations of their customers.
  • Seek continuous feedback to improve customer experience.
  • Create products, services, and experiences that exceed customer expectations.

To enhance your customer-focus, it’s important to regularly engage with your customers and actively seek their feedback. Implement changes based on their input and continually aim to exceed their expectations.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Think about a way you can improve the customer experience in your area of work.

Consider reading “Delivering Happiness: A Path to Profits, Passion, and Purpose” by Tony Hsieh or “The Customer Rules: The 39 Essential Rules for Delivering Sensational Service” by Lee Cockerell for deeper insights into customer-focused leadership.

With customer-focus being a key asset in our repertoire of skills for effective leadership, our next stop is Quality Decision Making—a vital ability that empowers leaders to make effective, timely, and informed decisions.

decision making

Decision Making

Quality decision making is an integral skill in the repertoire of effective leaders. It’s about making informed, timely, and effective decisions that contribute to the success of your team and your organization.

Consider the leadership of Indra Nooyi, the former CEO of PepsiCo. During her tenure, Nooyi made the strategic decision to shift PepsiCo’s focus towards healthier products in response to changing consumer preferences. This was a bold move at a time when sugary drinks and snacks were the company’s main profit drivers. However, her forward-thinking and well-informed decision have paved the way for PepsiCo’s sustained growth in a health-conscious market.

Similarly, Alan Mulally, the former CEO of Ford, exhibited exceptional decision-making skills during the 2008 financial crisis. Instead of accepting government bailout funds like its competitors, Mulally made the tough decision to mortgage all of Ford’s assets to finance a turnaround. His decision led to Ford’s revival and eventual return to profitability.

Effective leaders with quality decision-making skills:

  • Evaluate all available information and potential impacts before making decisions.
  • Are not afraid to make tough choices when necessary.
  • Learn from past decisions and adjust their decision-making process accordingly.

To enhance your decision-making skills, consider utilizing decision-making frameworks like SWOT analysis or decision trees. These tools can help you systematically analyze the potential outcomes of your decisions.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reflect on a recent decision you made. How did you arrive at that decision? What can you learn from it for future decision-making?

Consider reading “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman or “Decisive: How to Make Better Choices in Life and Work” by Chip Heath and Dan Heath for deeper insights into the decision-making process.

Quality decision making is an essential ingredient in the recipe for effective leadership. The next skill we will explore is Delegation—an ability that helps leaders distribute tasks effectively and develop their team members’ capabilities.

effective delegation for managers

Delegation

Delegation, an often misunderstood leadership skill, is crucial to becoming an effective leader. Rather than simply giving orders, it’s about empowering your team members, developing their skills, and fostering a sense of responsibility. Delegation eases your workload and allows you to focus on higher-level tasks—crucial for scaling leadership efforts.

Take the example of Dwight D. Eisenhower, the 34th U.S. President, and a five-star general during World War II. His capacity to delegate was legendary. He was known for assembling teams of competent individuals and giving them the autonomy to carry out tasks. He would outline the mission and the expected outcome, but the method of execution was often left to the experts on his team. This not only empowered his team members but also ensured the efficient use of resources and skills.

In the modern business world, Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin Group, stands out for his exceptional delegation skills. Branson attributes much of his success to his willingness to delegate. He believes in hiring talented people and giving them the freedom and authority to do what they do best. This approach has led to the growth and diversification of the Virgin Group into various industries.

Effective leaders who excel at delegation:

  • Clearly communicate the task, expectations, and outcomes.
  • Trust their team members with responsibility and autonomy.
  • Use delegation as a tool to develop their team members’ skills and capabilities.

To enhance your delegation skills, remember to clearly communicate your expectations, provide the necessary resources, and give your team the autonomy to complete the task.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Delegate a task that you’ve been doing yourself, and focus on how you can guide your team member rather than control the process.

Consider reading “The Art of Delegation: Maximize Your Time, Leverage Others, and Instantly Increase Profits” by Richard J. Bryan or “Turn the Ship Around!: A True Story of Turning Followers into Leaders” by L. David Marquet for insights into effective delegation strategies.

Delegation is a crucial skill for effective leaders, freeing up their time to focus on strategic tasks and decisions. Next, we’ll delve into a skill that complements delegation—Dealing with Paradox, which enables leaders to balance conflicting demands and perspectives.

Dealing with Paradox

Dealing with paradox is an advanced leadership skill that enables effective leaders to balance and navigate through conflicting demands and perspectives. It’s about embracing complexity and understanding that contradictions are part of the organizational life.

In a world of constant change and ambiguity, being able to manage paradoxes is crucial for leadership effectiveness.

Take the case of Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon. Bezos is known for his “two-pizza teams” concept—small, autonomous teams that can be fed with two pizzas. While he promotes autonomy and decentralization, he simultaneously insists on an obsessive central control over customer experience, creating a paradoxical leadership style that has contributed significantly to Amazon’s growth and innovation.

Historically, Winston Churchill exemplified dealing with paradox during his leadership of the UK in World War II. Churchill managed the paradox of maintaining morale while acknowledging the stark realities of war. His speeches expressed both grim realities and defiant optimism, giving people a sense of hope and purpose amid adversity.

Effective leaders capable of dealing with paradox:

  • Embrace ambiguity and are comfortable with contradictions.
  • Find balance in competing demands and perspectives.
  • Use paradoxes to drive creativity and innovation.

To improve your ability to deal with paradox, consider practicing mindfulness and reflective thinking to better recognize and navigate through contradictions.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Identify a paradox within your organization or team. How can you manage this contradiction to drive progress and innovation?

Consider reading “The Power of Paradox: How We Gain and Lose Influence” by Deborah Gruenfeld or “The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail” by Clayton M. Christensen for a deeper understanding of the power of paradox.

Dealing with paradox is a skill that will aid in navigating the complex landscape of leadership.

drive for results

Drive for Results

Drive for Results is a fundamental attribute of effective leaders. It’s about having a clear focus on achieving outcomes, relentlessly pursuing improvement, and being resilient in the face of setbacks or obstacles. Leaders who embody this skill inspire their teams to deliver high-quality work consistently.

A modern leader who personifies the drive for results is Leni Robredo, the Vice President of the Philippines. Known for her “laylayan” leadership style, she focuses on empowering the marginalized sectors of society. Despite limited resources and political challenges, her various initiatives, such as the Angat Buhay program, have yielded significant results in poverty alleviation and socio-economic development. Her relentless drive to uplift the lives of the Filipinos embodies the essence of results-driven leadership.

Effective leaders with a strong drive for results:

  • Set clear and achievable goals for themselves and their team.
  • Are not easily deterred by obstacles and challenges.
  • Continually look for ways to improve and achieve better results.

To enhance your drive for results, consider setting SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals and regularly tracking your progress against these goals.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Set a SMART goal for a project or task you’re working on. What steps can you take to achieve this goal?

Consider reading “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” by Daniel H. Pink or “Smarter Faster Better: The Secrets of Being Productive in Life and Business” by Charles Duhigg for insights into enhancing your drive for results.

Having a strong Drive for Results is vital in achieving success as an effective leader. Up next, we’ll discuss a lighter, yet influential, aspect of leadership—Humor, a skill that adds a human touch to leadership and boosts team morale.

skills for leaders - humor

Humor

Why don’t some leaders play hide and seek? Because good luck hiding when everybody’s following you!

Humor is often underestimated in its ability to boost morale, lighten the atmosphere, and foster a positive team culture. Effective leaders use humor to connect with their teams, break down barriers, and reduce stress in the workplace.

Take Sir Winston Churchill, who was known not only for his leadership during World War II but also for his quick wit. Churchill used humor not only to lighten the mood during challenging times but also to connect with people and win public approval.

In the modern era, Barack Obama, the former President of the United States, stood out for his sense of humor. His humorous quips during speeches and dinners humanized his role, made him relatable, and helped to diffuse tense situations.

Effective leaders who employ humor:

  • Use humor to create a positive and enjoyable work atmosphere.
  • Understand the appropriate time and place for humor.
  • Connect with their teams on a human level using humor.

If you want to incorporate humor into your leadership style, start by sharing a funny (and appropriate) story or joke in your next meeting. Observe the reaction and adjust accordingly.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Try to lighten the atmosphere in your next team meeting with a piece of appropriate humor. How does the team respond?

Consider reading “Humor, Seriously: Why Humor Is a Secret Weapon in Business and Life” by Jennifer Aaker and Naomi Bagdonas or “The Levity Effect: Why it Pays to Lighten Up” by Adrian Gostick and Scott Christopher for a deeper understanding of the power of humor in leadership.

Humor can indeed add a dash of human touch in leadership, making leaders more relatable and approachable. Coming up next, we’ll delve into Innovation—a skill that is instrumental for effective leaders in our rapidly changing world.

Quotes

here are a few notable quotes that illustrate the relationship between humor and leadership:

“Humor is part of the art of leadership, of getting along with people, of getting things done.” – Dwight D. Eisenhower

“The most wasted of all days is one without laughter.” – E.E. Cummings

“Leadership is not about being in charge. It is about taking care of those in your charge. And humor and humility go a long way towards accomplishing that.” – Simon Sinek

“A good laugh overcomes more difficulties and dissipates more dark clouds than any other one thing.” – Laura Ingalls Wilder

“The more you find fun in your work, the more money you will make.” – Mark Twain

Humor is a powerful tool in leadership—it can bridge gaps, build relationships, and foster a positive work environment. As these quotes suggest, incorporating humor into your leadership style can lead to more productive and happier teams.

innovation

Innovation

Innovation, the ability to generate novel and valuable ideas, is a cornerstone of effective leadership in our rapidly evolving world. Leaders who champion innovation inspire creativity, drive progress, and foster a culture of continuous improvement within their organizations.

Here are five leaders known for their innovative leadership:

Steve Jobs: Co-founder of Apple, Jobs transformed multiple industries with his relentless pursuit of innovative products and experiences.

Elon Musk: CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, Musk continues to push boundaries in the fields of electric vehicles, space exploration, and sustainable energy.

Jeff Bezos: The founder of Amazon, Bezos revolutionized e-commerce and continues to drive innovation in cloud computing, digital streaming, and artificial intelligence.

Indra Nooyi: Former CEO of PepsiCo, Nooyi was instrumental in shifting the company’s focus to healthier products and championing sustainability.

Jack Ma: Co-founder of Alibaba Group, Ma brought e-commerce to China and continues to innovate in various fields such as finance, logistics, and cloud computing.

One approach to fostering innovation is through Design Thinking, a human-centered methodology that involves understanding the user’s needs, ideating solutions, prototyping, and testing. It encourages out-of-the-box thinking and iterative problem-solving to create innovative solutions.

In addition, there are several tools leaders can use to foster innovation, such as the Business Model Canvas for strategizing, the Lean Startup methodology for testing business ideas, and Ideo’s Method Cards for inspiring creativity.

Effective innovative leaders:

  • Encourage creative thinking and are open to new ideas.
  • Foster a culture of continuous learning and improvement.
  • Use tools like Design Thinking to drive innovation.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Choose a challenge your team is facing and use Design Thinking to generate innovative solutions.

Consider reading “The Innovator’s Dilemma: When New Technologies Cause Great Firms to Fail” by Clayton M. Christensen or “Change by Design: How Design Thinking Transforms Organizations and Inspires Innovation” by Tim Brown for deeper insights into innovation in leadership.

Innovation is an integral part of leading in a rapidly evolving environment. Next, we will discuss a trait that is the backbone of all skills for effective leadership – Integrity.

Integrity

Integrity, or the adherence to moral and ethical principles, is a key characteristic of effective leaders. In Filipino, a person with integrity is said to have “prinsipyo,” connoting someone who is steadfast and stands by their principles. This is often a favorite core value in many Filipino companies, highlighting the importance of honesty, reliability, and ethical conduct in leadership roles.

Consider, for example, Jesse Robredo, the former Mayor of Naga City and Secretary of the Interior and Local Government. He was known for his “tsinelas leadership”—a symbol of his humility, accessibility, and dedicated public service. He was a staunch advocate of good governance, consistently pushing for transparency and accountability in public service.

Another example is Jovy Hernandez, former CEO of ePLDT and SVP and Head of PLDT and Smart Enterprise Business Groups. He is recognized for leading with integrity and fostering a culture of honesty and transparency within his organizations. His leadership has helped these organizations achieve remarkable growth while maintaining high ethical standards.

Effective leaders with integrity:

  • Uphold ethical standards, even when it’s not the easy path.
  • Demonstrate honesty and transparency in their actions.
  • Inspire trust by being reliable and consistent in their words and actions.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reflect on your own leadership actions. Are there areas where you can better align your actions with your ethical principles?

Consider reading “The Power of Ethics: How to Make Good Choices in a Complicated World” by Susan Liautaud or “Leading with Integrity: Character-Based Leadership” by Dr. Tony Simons for a deeper understanding of how integrity plays a crucial role in leadership.

Integrity is truly the bedrock of effective leadership, providing a foundation of trust and respect. This underpins the next skill we will explore, Interpersonal Savvy, where building effective relationships is key.

Interpersonal Savvy

Interpersonal savvy is a critical competency in effective leadership. It’s the art and science of building genuine and effective relationships, a skill that’s rooted deeply in the Filipino value of “Pakikipagkapwa-tao” or treating others as equals. This cultural virtue embodies the value Filipinos place on harmonious relationships, even with those we’ve just met. The Filipino essence of belonging and unity, often felt through simple gestures, conversations, or shared experiences, highlights our intrinsic need to connect.

One of the shining examples of a leader with exceptional interpersonal savvy is Tony Meloto, the founder of Gawad Kalinga (GK). His initiative to build homes for the less fortunate wasn’t just about providing shelter—it was about building communities, fostering relationships, and promoting mutual respect and dignity among all members. Meloto’s ability to connect with both the grassroots and the elite, making each feel valued and heard, is a testament to his interpersonal skills.

Another is Maria Ressa, the CEO of Rappler, a leading online news site in the Philippines. Ressa’s leadership style emphasizes open communication and collaboration. With her deep sense of purpose and her commitment to truth, she has fostered a culture at Rappler where everyone feels part of a bigger cause. Her ability to navigate challenging political landscapes while maintaining strong relationships with her team showcases her interpersonal savvy.

Effective leaders with interpersonal savvy:

  • Prioritize genuine connections over transactional relationships.
  • Listen actively, ensuring everyone feels heard and valued.
  • Foster an inclusive environment where all feel a sense of belonging.

Here’s your challenge for the week: Reflect on your relationships within your organization. Are there bridges to build or fences to mend? How can you make someone feel more valued today?

Consider diving into books like “How to Win Friends and Influence People” by Dale Carnegie or “Emotional Intelligence” by Daniel Goleman to gain a deeper insight into the art of building relationships.

Interpersonal savvy is a cornerstone in the foundation of leadership. But along with this personal touch, effective leaders also possess the ability to learn quickly and adapt, a skill known as “Learning on the Fly,” which we will explore next.

Learning on the Fly

In our fast-paced, ever-evolving world, adaptability isn’t just a valuable trait; it’s a crucial one. With challenges like the recent pandemic, conventional wisdom and previous experiences often took a back seat, highlighting the vital skill of “Learning on the Fly.”

This skill isn’t just about accumulating new knowledge rapidly. It’s about recalibrating strategies based on the present moment, making decisions in the face of uncertainty, and stepping forward even when the path isn’t clear. It’s about leading with confidence and conviction, even in uncharted waters.

We’ve seen the need for this skill underscored during the pandemic. The challenges of COVID-19 demanded swift reactions and adaptability from leaders globally. Some responded with agility, quickly pivoting their strategies to align with new realities, while others faltered, sticking to old paradigms or failing to consider expert advice.

For instance, local businesses and entrepreneurs in the Philippines showcased their agility remarkably. Restaurants, almost overnight, shifted to delivery-centric models. Retailers enhanced their online presence, and educators innovated to deliver effective virtual learning experiences.

Effective leaders who excel in learning on the fly:

  • Welcome new information and promptly weave it into their strategic approach.
  • Make confident decisions, even amidst ambiguity.
  • Fluidly adjust to changing environments, unafraid to change course when necessary.

Your challenge for the week: Reflect on a situation where you had to adapt swiftly. What lessons did it offer? How can you brace yourself for future unforeseen challenges?

To deepen this skill, consider diving into books like “Unlearn: Let Go of Past Success to Achieve Extraordinary Results” by Barry O’Reilly or “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman.

While adaptability is vital, so is the power of effective communication, which starts with the fundamental skill of “Listening.” Up next, we’ll delve into why listening isn’t just about hearing words but understanding and acting upon them as an essential tool for effective leadership.

Listening

Communication, at its core, is a beautiful dance between giving and receiving. Just as a speaker gives information, listeners grant their time and attention, two invaluable assets, by actively receiving the message. More so, when we genuinely listen, we’re not just passively absorbing; we’re actively giving. We’re providing empathy, understanding, and respect.

Leadership is deeply intertwined with this dance of communication. Leaders who truly listen, who genuinely give their time and attention, are those who excel. They recognize that listening is not a passive act but a powerful form of giving. It signals to team members, peers, and partners that they are valued, their thoughts matter, and their voice has a space in the dialogue.

In the Filipino culture, the essence of “pakikinig” or deep listening goes beyond merely hearing words. It’s about immersing oneself in the feelings and perspectives of another. By doing so, leaders bridge gaps, create understanding, and foster a culture of respect and trust.

Some of the most effective leaders from the Philippines and beyond have been exceptional listeners. They’ve understood the subtle cues, the unsaid feelings, and the hidden aspirations, turning them into actionable insights for their teams and organizations.

To cultivate your listening skills:

  • Practice active listening. Instead of formulating a response while someone is speaking, focus entirely on understanding their perspective.
  • Seek feedback. Often, those around us can offer insights into how effectively we’re listening.
  • Reiterate what you’ve heard. This ensures clarity and demonstrates to the speaker that they’ve genuinely been heard.

Your challenge: Dedicate time in your next conversation purely for listening. Feel the difference it makes, not just in understanding but in building trust.

To further hone this skill, explore books like “Just Listen: Discover the Secret to Getting Through to Absolutely Anyone” by Mark Goulston and “The Lost Art of Listening” by Michael P. Nichols.

Effective communication also goes beyond listening. It requires a deep understanding of diverse perspectives, which brings us to our next skill: “Managing Diversity.” Dive into how inclusive leadership can shape a harmonious and productive workspace.

Managerial Courage

Courage is often visualized as a warrior heading into battle, unwavering in the face of danger. Yet, in the modern corporate world, courage manifests differently. Managerial courage isn’t just about making the tough decisions; it’s about standing up for what’s right even when it’s unpopular, challenging the status quo, and being transparent about decisions and their implications.

In the Philippines, there’s an old saying: “Ang tapang ay hindi nasusukat sa lakas, kundi sa katatagan ng loob,” which translates to “Courage isn’t measured by strength but by the steadfastness of one’s spirit.” Filipinos deeply value leaders who exhibit this resilience and determination, especially in the face of adversity.

For instance, amidst the challenges of the pandemic, many Filipino leaders rose to the occasion, showing not just agility in decision-making but also the courage to admit when they were uncertain or needed to pivot strategies based on new information. They didn’t shy away from tough conversations or hide behind corporate jargon. They were upfront, direct, and human.

To cultivate managerial courage:

  • Face challenges head-on. Don’t shy away from difficult situations or decisions.
  • Seek feedback and be open to it. This might be challenging, but it’s an opportunity for growth.
  • Communicate transparently. Your team deserves to know the “why” behind decisions.

Your challenge: Reflect on a decision you’ve been avoiding due to its potential unpopularity. Address it this week. Gather all the necessary data, weigh the pros and cons, and make a transparent and informed choice.

For a deeper dive into understanding and cultivating courage, consider reading “Dare to Lead: Brave Work. Tough Conversations. Whole Hearts.” by Brené Brown and “The Fearless Organization: Creating Psychological Safety in the Workplace for Learning, Innovation, and Growth” by Amy C. Edmondson.

Closely tied to having courage is the next essential leadership skill: “Motivating Others.” Understand how to inspire your team to achieve more than they ever thought possible.

Managing Diversity

Have you ever considered the incredible tapestry that is Filipino culture? From the rhythmic dances of Luzon’s mountains to the harmonious sounds of Visayas and the vivid festivals of Mindanao, each region provides a unique color to our nation’s fabric. Now, add the vibrant threads of expats and international colleagues, especially in our bustling BPOs. What do we get? A dazzling display of diversity! But, how can leaders effectively manage such a vast spectrum of backgrounds and experiences?

“Magkaiba, ngunit magkaisa,” meaning “different but united,” is a sentiment that captures the Filipino essence. In leadership, it translates to more than just acknowledging these differences—it means celebrating, understanding, and leveraging them.

A leader embracing diversity:

  • Cherishes individuality. Everyone’s uniqueness is their strength; treasure it.
  • Upholds inclusivity. Ensure every voice, regardless of its origin, is heard and valued.
  • Embarks on continuous learning. Delve into the backgrounds and viewpoints of team members, understanding them truly.

Your challenge: Initiate a “cultural sharing” day in your workplace. Let everyone narrate stories or values from their region or heritage. Such activities not only foster respect but also strengthen team bonds.

To dive deeper into this theme, delve into “The Diversity Bonus: How Great Teams Pay Off in the Knowledge Economy” by Scott E. Page and “Inclusive Leadership: The Definitive Guide to Developing and Executing an Impactful Diversity and Inclusion Strategy” by Charlotte Sweeney and Fleur Bothwick.

As we champion diversity, it’s equally crucial to motivate every diverse member of our team. The skill of “Motivating Others” complements managing diversity, ensuring that every individual, regardless of their background, feels driven and valued. And that, my friend, is the hallmark of true leadership. How are you playing your part?

Motivating Others

How do you truly ignite a spark within someone? It’s a question I’ve been asked countless times during my sessions, and the answer might surprise you. It isn’t about loud, rousing speeches or relying on a motivational speaker’s charisma. No, the secret lies in connecting on a profound, human level.

Imagine walking into your team’s office, not just knowing their names or titles but understanding their dreams, aspirations, and what gets them out of bed each morning. It’s about looking past the daily tasks and recognizing the passions that fuel them. Leaders who tap into this deep reservoir of individual motivations find an unparalleled source of energy and drive.

So, how can leaders harness this?

  • Open Conversations. Initiate discussions that go beyond work. What are their hobbies? Goals? Fears?
  • Align with Vision. Find intersections between personal aspirations and the organization’s vision. Show them how they fit into the bigger picture.
  • Empower and Support. Equip team members with the tools and resources they need, providing a platform to achieve their personal and professional goals.

A piece of advice for leaders: Dive into “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” by Daniel H. Pink. It sheds light on what truly motivates us and how leaders can tap into that.

After understanding motivations, it’s essential to put it into action. This is where negotiation, our next skill, comes in. Knowing your team’s desires will help you navigate conversations, ensuring everyone feels valued and heard. How well are you aligning motivations with actions?

Negotiating

Have you ever walked into a negotiation thinking, “How can I win this?” If so, it might be time to reframe that question. The most effective leaders aren’t just looking for a single victory. They’re aiming for a triple win – for themselves, for the other party, and for the greater good.

The essence of negotiation isn’t about arm-wrestling your way to the top but in understanding and catering to mutual benefits. It’s rooted in the principle of win, win, win. 

But how can we shift our mindset to achieve this?

  • Listen Actively. It’s more than just hearing words. It’s about understanding underlying concerns, motivations, and desires of the other party.
  • Prepare Ahead. Anticipate what the other side values. The more you know, the better positioned you’ll be to find common ground.
  • Seek Mutual Benefit. Aim for agreements where everyone feels they’re gaining. This not only ensures satisfaction but fosters trust and long-term relationships.

Remember, it’s not about ‘taking the pie’ but rather ‘expanding it’ so that everyone gets a more significant slice. An enlightening read on this topic is “Getting to Yes: Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In” by Roger Fisher and William Ury. It delves deeper into the art of principled negotiation, where both sides emerge winners.

As you sharpen your negotiation skills, it becomes crucial to communicate your points effectively. This brings us to the importance of presentation skills, our next leadership tool. Do you possess the ability to convey your ideas compellingly and understandably?

Presentation Skills

Have you ever sat through a drab, uninspiring presentation? We all have. But when a leader takes the stage, the expectation is different. Leaders have the onus to inspire, inform, and influence. How effectively they do this, oftentimes, hinges on their presentation skills.

Now, if you’re aiming to enhance your presentation prowess, you’re in luck! Not only have I conducted comprehensive workshops on this very topic, but I’ve also penned an article detailing “7 Powerful Presentation Strategies” to aid leaders like you:

Know Your Audience: Before any speech or presentation, understanding who’s listening is crucial. Tailor your content and approach based on the audience’s preferences, pain points, and aspirations.

Prepare for Your Big Idea: What’s the central theme or message of your presentation? Once you’ve pinned this down, everything else revolves around emphasizing and re-emphasizing this core idea.

Develop Effective Presentations: Structure is essential. Your introduction should be engaging, the body insightful, and the conclusion memorable.

Develop Dynamic Delivery: The most crucial content can fall flat if not presented with energy and enthusiasm. Voice modulation, body language, and pacing can make or break your delivery.

Make Your Presentation Memorable, Actionable, and Transferable: A successful presentation isn’t just one that’s remembered. It’s one that spurs action and whose lessons can be transferred and applied by those who attended.

Deal Effectively with Difficult Participants: Not every audience member will be agreeable or easy-going. Learning to handle interruptions or challenging questions with grace can significantly boost your credibility.

Strive for Total Quality Improvement: Every presentation is an opportunity to learn and improve. Always seek feedback and aim for incremental improvements each time.

Embracing these strategies can significantly bolster your leadership skills, enabling better communication and even driving increased revenue. Dive deeper by exploring “Talk Like TED: The 9 Public-Speaking Secrets of the World’s Top Minds” by Carmine Gallo. This insightful read offers a treasure trove of tips on delivering impactful presentations.

Speaking of driving results, presentation skills are just the tip of the iceberg. Our next leadership tool, problem-solving, taps into the very essence of leadership: identifying issues and charting a course to overcome them. How adept are you at this critical skill?

Problem-Solving Skills

Who hasn’t heard the age-old adage, “Where there’s a will, there’s a way?” This saying seems to be the mantra of effective leaders known for their stellar problem-solving skills. Instead of viewing challenges as insurmountable obstacles, they perceive them as opportunities to demonstrate resilience, innovation, and adaptability.

Sir Winston Churchill is one such luminary. During World War II, when Britain faced its darkest hours, Churchill’s unwavering resolve and ability to strategize solutions played a pivotal role in keeping the nation’s spirit alive. He not only navigated military tactics but also dealt with internal issues, demonstrating an uncanny knack for resolving problems that seemed insurmountable.

Fast forward to the tech era, Elon Musk stands out. From the challenges of space travel with SpaceX to sustainable energy solutions via Tesla, Musk continually tackles some of the world’s most pressing issues, displaying an unquenchable thirst for solutions.

Back in the Philippines, Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala exhibits keen problem-solving capabilities. Under his leadership, the Ayala Corporation has consistently pivoted and adapted to the changing economic landscape, venturing into various industries and ensuring sustainable growth. His approach to challenges? To view them as chances to innovate and diversify.

But how does one develop a sharp problem-solving ability?

Start by cultivating a mindset of curiosity and open-mindedness. Embrace challenges as learning opportunities. Engage in exercises that stimulate critical thinking, like brain teasers or strategy games. Attend workshops and training sessions that specifically target problem-solving techniques.

Importantly, surround yourself with diverse thinkers; often, a fresh perspective can shed light on a previously inscrutable issue. And always remember, the journey of refining your problem-solving skills is continuous, requiring consistent effort and learning.

Honing your problem-solving skills is an integral part of leadership training. To delve deeper into this subject, consider reading “The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses” by Eric Ries. This book provides invaluable insights into the iterative process of problem-solving.

But what happens when the issues at hand involve people and differing opinions? Our next skill, “Managing Diversity”, is about bridging gaps and finding harmony amidst differences. How adept are you at celebrating diversity while fostering unity?

Strategic Mindset

Have you ever met someone who consistently sees the bigger picture, someone who doesn’t just aim for incremental changes but massive, game-changing results?

Leaders who possess a strategic mindset don’t just settle for the status quo; they envision a future that’s ten times bigger and better.

They understand that to bring about transformative change, one must first shift their mindset, expanding horizons and breaking free from limiting beliefs.

Historically, Alexander the Great is often hailed as a master strategist. By the age of 30, he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world. His ambition knew no bounds, and he constantly sought ways to expand his reign.

In the world of modern business, few exemplify the strategic mindset better than Elon Musk. From PayPal to Tesla, SpaceX to Neuralink, Musk doesn’t just think about improving industries; he thinks about revolutionizing them.

For Filipinos, the tale of Tony Tan Caktiong comes to mind. The founder and chairman of Jollibee Foods Corporation, Tony transformed a simple ice cream parlor into the largest fast-food chain in the country, eventually taking his brand global. This feat wasn’t achieved through mere operational tweaks but through a strategic vision of dominating the local fast-food market and beyond.

Dan Sullivan, the founder of Strategic Coach, is another beacon of strategic thinking. His teachings emphasize the power of thinking bigger, fostering an entrepreneurial mindset, and consistently seeking opportunities for exponential growth. He often mentions the concept of the “10x Mindset”, pushing individuals to break away from incremental thinking and aim for tenfold improvements.

So, how can one cultivate a strategic mindset?

Begin by constantly challenging your own assumptions. Always ask yourself, “Is there a better, more impactful way?” Surround yourself with forward-thinkers, and don’t shy away from ambitious goals. Read widely, especially materials that push the boundaries of conventional wisdom.

A recommended read to further refine your strategic thinking is “The 10x Rule: The Only Difference Between Success and Failure” by Grant Cardone.

With a strategic mindset, the sky’s the limit. But always remember, strategy without the right leadership skills to execute is just a dream. Equip yourself with the necessary leadership training, immerse yourself in the principles of great leaders, and continue to push your boundaries.

To discover and learn more, go to What is a strategic mindset? You will find more ways to build the skills and even create your personal development plan. Explore also my article on strategic skills for leaders.

Build future-ready leadership skills

Build Leadership Skills

As you reflect on all these leadership skills, it’s clear that being an effective leader is a dynamic role requiring a multitude of capabilities.

Whether you’re just starting on your leadership journey or looking to refine your skills further, there’s always room for growth. Embrace each challenge, learn continuously, and strive to be the best leader you can be.

From our journey through the 28 essential leadership skills, it’s evident that effective leadership is a blend of continuous learning, self-awareness, and the right strategies. Each of these competencies could easily be expanded into its own deep dive. But for your convenience, I’ve brought all of them into this consolidated guide.

So, what next?

  1. Copy & Reflect: Begin by making a personal copy of these 28 leadership skills. Reflect on each, understanding where you currently stand and where you want to be.
  2. Engage Your Team: Allocate time for a team meeting. Discuss, debate, and dissect these skills. Understand the relevance and priority of each for your team.
  3. Mapping with Organizational Goals: Integrate these skills into your organizational competency map. This ensures alignment of leadership development with business objectives.
  4. Prioritize & Plan: Some skills might resonate more with your immediate challenges or goals. Highlight them and create a roadmap for mastering these first.
  5. Learn & Evolve: The leadership landscape is dynamic. Regular revisits, discussions, and updates on these skills will keep you and your team at the forefront.

Deepen Your Leadership Journey with Specialized Workshops

While this guide offers a foundation, honing leadership skills often requires hands-on experiences, expert guidance, and tailored strategies. If you’re looking to delve deeper and refine your leadership capabilities, I invite you to explore the leadership courses and workshops I offer.

Each workshop is meticulously designed to cater to the unique challenges and opportunities of leadership in the Philippines, keeping our rich cultural ethos in mind.

By investing in these workshops, you’re not just gaining knowledge; you’re equipping yourself with practical skills, actionable strategies, and a network of like-minded leaders. It’s a journey from being good to exceptional.

Interested? Eager to further sharpen your leadership edge? Explore these opportunities today! Elevate your leadership game, foster a culture of excellence, and drive unparalleled success for your organization.

Have thoughts or questions? Let’s discuss. Drop a comment below or get in touch with Jef Menguin. Every shared insight, every question, and every interaction propels us forward in our leadership journey. Let’s grow and succeed, together!

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