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Leadership vs Management Part 3: What Is a Leader?

After two previous blogs discussing common myths about leaders vs. managers, and digging into what a manager is, we finally come to the true heart of the matter: what is a leader?

Great leadership is one of those qualities which is easy to identify, but hard to define. Nevertheless, as we teach in our leadership training courses, leadership is a skill which can be developed. Knowing the attributes of superior leaders and how they operate is one of the first steps towards becoming one yourself.

Understanding the Qualities of Leaders

There have been so many "great leaders" throughout history, in so many areas, that it might seem impossible to distill -for example- what connects Franklin D. Roosevelt to Lee Iacocca, or Elizabeth I to Gandhi. However, in our leadership training development, we boil it down to three key traits: Vision, Communication, and Motivation.

  1. Vision

    Perhaps above all, a great leader has vision. They are aware of the current situation, but their focus is to make it better. Whether leading a war, growing a business, or striving to improve a country, they can see far into a better future and envision paths for reaching that future.

    A leader is not merely a dreamer, however. They still should be grounded enough not to ask the impossible... or, at least, to ask the impossible on a reasonable timeline!

  2. Communication

    It's one thing to have a vision, but it's another to articulate it clearly. Communication skills are at the heart of leadership. They must be able to take that future vision in their head, and share the vision with those they are leading. Without this ability, their plans will often come to naught.

  3. Motivation

    Finally, as we mentioned in Part 1, leadership does not simply mean exercising authority. The third key skill of a great leader is that those they lead will follow willingly. Relying on power alone becomes self-defeating. When a leader and followers share the same goals, great things happen.

Chart Your Own Course Towards Leadership Excellence Today

X-Stream Leadership Group is focused on one thing: taking the best from today's corporate environment, and making them even better. We teach and demonstrate the skills necessary for superior leadership, from developing a vision for the future to helping ensure it's properly implemented within your organization. We have regional offices in Longmont, CO – Dallas, TX – Laurel Hill, FL serving clients in the larger Philadelphia, Denver and Dallas areas and World-Wide.

Contact X-Stream Leadership Group today to learn more about our leadership training!

X-Stream Leadership Group, LLC   |   1248 Queen Street, Pottstown, PA 19464   |   PH (610) 908-2223   |   FX (610) 705-1892
Regional offices in Longmont, CO – Dallas, TX – Laurel Hill, FL serving clients in the larger Philadelphia, Denver and Dallas areas and World-Wide.