As a leader, you will be called upon to solve a variety of problems. People will seek out your expertise to enhance performance and productivity. Your people skills will be sought out to facilitate, even mediate at times. Your wisdom will build your reputation and increase your responsibility to others. It is therefore in your best interest to constantly improve your skills and be up to date on methods and systems to enhance performance, productivity and skills. Your professional growth will also be closely linked to your self-growth. Remember, an empty shell or an outdated one rarely leads for a long time.

How can you effectively in this day and age, as Covey brilliantly states?

Your best bet is to search the web for programs in your field. Fortunately, reputed institutions provide an immense selection that is both credible and of high quality. Your sense of discrimination needs to be acute when you buy into these. Research the credibility of the provider as it is essential. In addition, it is well worth building your own library of reference material so that you are always prepared when asked.

Many credible authors will provide articles or free ebook that can put you up to date on topics you have somewhat ignored or neglected for a time. Reading these will keep you up to par. You may sign-up for ezines that will allow you to receive weekly or monthly articles on your domain of expertise. More than one is advisable as they cover a variety of elements that can be most useful. Bookstores overflow with interesting material to purchase.

Preparing well organized binders and placing these by topics will give you a secure sense of being prepared when having a rush meeting needing some substantial information. Naturally these folders may be digital just as long as you have a back-up copy on hand and that they are well organized.

When someone brings up an issue or topic that you are rusty on or worst, not aware of, see it as an opportunity to really research it and return to topic with the person at a later date. This way, you will stay on top of your game at all times.

Brilliant people will write up new systems and methods constantly so keeping track of innovations and their tested results may give you an inestimable edge at one point or another.

As a Leader, it is your responsibility to be at your best so that those looking up to you for guidance may be able to trust you. Trust is promoted through a number of characteristics and attitudes. One of these is to be able to trust that the information received is true and to the best interest of the person requesting it. You are expected to be knowledgeable in your domain, not in all domains. Being able to admit that you do not know something is also a valuable characteristic and show honesty. If you add that you will research it at the best of your ability or suggest a proper resource, you will gain as well.

When employers or employees seek out leaders, they look for a number of characteristics. They’ll be sensitive to attitude and seek out certain qualities. In a certain domain of expertise, they will seek out those knowledgeable enough to provide clear, up to date, reliable, accurate data. Your willingness to improve will be denoted and your trustworthiness will have you stand-out in times of envisioned promotions.

Some are born leaders; others become worthy of leadership, positioning themselves by building the skills and competencies needed. We’ve just touched the tip of the iceberg here. Looking into all the Emotional Intelligence competencies will nicely complement the cognitive side of your brain!

Having tools such as methods, systems, strategies to complement your expertise, experience and competencies will help you stand out in times of competitive situations as well. So do take the time to as Stephen Covey writes.

It is the best way to maintain a high standard that will undeniably set the pace for a successful Leadership!

Happy Trails,

Elizabeth McNally, Mentor

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Author's Bio: 



Some 17 years of experience as a Mentor & Coach, pertinent Career and life experiences, a Master’s degree in Education and additional training in Emotional Intelligence and Compassion Fatigue Recovery enable me to better perceive my clients’ needs. Because of this, I know how to help my clients clarify their thoughts, pinpoint issues and take concrete, suitable action to solve the problem, in record time.