I was asked recently by a leader in education what 3 things I’d teach teenagers for Leadership and Success in Life.

This is an absolutely great question and goes to the heart of what I’m passionate about – leadership and success in their broadest context i.e. leading the life you want – a successful life that makes you feel happy and fulfilled. It’s also about developing successful leaders for the future – people who will be good at leading themselves as well as others.

My first thoughts were that they should learn

•how to become extremely self-aware

•how to figure out who and what is most important to them

•how to create a vision for the life they want to lead

•how to plan their life and career accordingly

•how to use their talents and skills to generate income

•how to manage their finances to fit their life and career plan

But that’s more than 3 and there were other tips I wanted to include!

For instance, some teenagers have the talent and potential to become leaders who excel – they are people and service-oriented, have vision, are collaborative, have good interpersonal skills, like people and have a belief in potential and growth. They recognise that there is more to a person than their intellectual or sporting ability. They operate from their conscience and work with rather than against other people.

These youngsters need to know this about themselves and know that this is important to be an effective leader of others, who can inspire and motivate so that people do what’s required.

As a teenager you need to know that you don’t always have to develop your weaknesses. This is often encouraged in school where pupils are asked to work harder at the subjects they don’t do as well in.

Now I’m not saying that you shouldn’t have a basic grounding in the essentials and the ability to analyse the impact your weaknesses or behaviour is having on other people or on you achieving what you want; however what I am saying, is that knowing that improving or developing your weaknesses is not something that has to continue throughout the course of your life, can be tremendously liberating!

How many of us adults have learned this lesson? I know I still catch myself sometimes saying things like “I just need to keep going and work at it.” Now I’m not saying that this is never appropriate, but that it’s not always appropriate, so we shouldn’t be saying this to ourselves about everything we do.

How much easier, happy and successful life is when we’ve figured out who and what we are and we spend our time doing the things we enjoy and are already good at! Why not develop and get even better at those? Why do we always feel we should work hard at everything we do?

How about working smart? Those that can and do have got it sussed!

Another tip I’d give is that we don’t have to do everything ourselves. Again at school we’re taught we must do everything ourselves. If we don’t we’re told it’s wrong, we’ll be found out or we’re cheating! Well, all successful people I know or know about develop a support group - a team of people around them.

These are people who may be better or more intelligent than you in various areas, but will actively support you to achieve your goals.

This is only possible when you have a burning desire or vision that you can communicate to them – something that they believe in or can get passionate about. The term synergy is very apt here – where the sum of the whole produces more than the sum of the individual parts could.

Another lesson I’d love to give teenagers is not to fear ‘fear.’ I think for most of us, the older we get the more aware we become of the consequences of our actions. I don’t always think that’s a good thing, as it can stop us trying something in case it goes wrong, or worse, in case we look foolish!

From my perspective now as an older person I can see that actually it’s much better to get into action and get things wrong sometimes, or look foolish, than to procrastinate or become the victim of “analysis paralysis”; because action gives you movement, which creates momentum, which can help keep you moving forward.

So, if I had to choose just 3 Tips For Teenagers on Leadership and Success in Life, they’d be:

1.Get help to figure out who you are and what you want in life (your dream/vision and goals for your life)

2.Create a plan for your life and career based on what you discover in 1

3.Get support and advice to keep taking action to move you towards your vision and goals (don’t get diverted or let the fear, or external people or circumstances, stop you!)

These could also be my 3 Leadership Success Tips – after all it’s what I spend a lot of my coaching time helping women business leaders to do – we start broadly, tackle the things that sabotage their success, then focus in on their leadership role at work, create a plan and get into action!

Author's Bio: 

After experiencing unhappiness in her work and then a decline in her business results that affected how she felt about herself, her business and her life, Julie developed her breakthrough DANCE system to help business women reconnect with themselves to discover their own true path to success rather than simply following or modelling others. For free success information and details of her book Stepping into Success ...The 7 Essential Moves to Bring Your Business to Life visit www.juliejohnsoncoaching.com