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Everyone Can Be a Leader
...if they are in the right situation and have the right skills
We have a “mantra” at The Jennings Group—Everyone can and should be a leader at something at every point in their career.
This does not mean that everyone can or should be CEO. A ship only needs one captain at a time. But leadership is about influence, and everyone can have a positive influence on the company and its clients. It’s simply a matter of finding the right fit, building their skills, building their confidence, and then turning them loose. Consider:
Technical leaders: people can have influence if they are the “go-to” person for getting things done right. They influence everyone who asks them to weigh in on something… even if they wait to be asked before they will weigh in.
Team leaders: people can have influence if they can build teams and get people working together collaboratively.
Charismatic visionaries: people can have influence if they can generate enthusiasm for a new project, new goal, new growth opportunity, or new way of doing things.
Empowered people: people who are given authority over a project or part of a project can develop that “owner’s eye” for proactively solving problems and moving the project toward the goal. This is something that can be done even with entry-level staffers or summer interns. Being able to shepherd their part of that project—”their baby”—build their experience and their confidence, making them able to take on a larger responsibility next time.
Rain-makers and Client-facers: people who can generate interest in your firm’s offerings, close the deal, and keep the client happy are using their influence effectively.
Consider which of these are in your own “wheelhouse.” You may have more than one. Consider your direct reports, and which may be in their wheelhouses. And now consider where any or all of you have room to expand, improve or more effectively use your influencing potential.