Building leadership skills early on
It has always been thought that leaders are born naturally and not made. In fact, as opposed to common belief, leadership skills are nurtured and developed. Given the proper environment and opportunities, everyone has the potential to be a great leader. One doesn’t need to be the most popular, nor does he/she need to be extremely talented. All that is required is lots of encouragement and the chances to learn the skills and to apply them in everyday situations.
So why is it even important to be a leader? The reason is simple: you cannot remain a follower your whole life. One may not necessarily be a leader in his workplace, but when it comes to the household and the family, he/she will eventually need to step it up. Young children are the future of our society they must look forward to being effective leaders in government and all the other fields like business and education in the future.
In order to raise a leader in the household, the nurturing should begin in early childhood. Studies have shown that early experiences in life have a major impact on adult leadership potential and occupancy. Some personal traits such as the ability to understand and deal with others, the need for achievement, confidence and assertiveness are seen to be influenced substantially by childhood experiences. Parental practices also take a major role in determining whether or not children were active in leadership roles.
Developing leadership skills is really a lifelong process such as it is with learning. Communication skills (written or oral as well as non-verbal, listening), problem solving skills, organizational skills, flexibility and creativity are all qualities that could be constantly refined and are crucial in leadership. Early on, parents have the biggest roles in nurturing the kids, but slowly as they enter into the world, all the people around them will have a role in shaping their future: teachers at school, the volleyball coach, or even the band conductor.
What can be done to help my child develop leadership skills?
Below are just a few ways to train your child to have leadership skills. By explaining to young children what you are doing and why you are doing it, they will learn to do things with purpose, which in turn may lead to outcomes.
Seeing things from another’s point of view; being compassionate.
Communicating with others in various ways and knowing how to act especially when someone’s opinion is different from yours.
Placing them in positions where they can succeed and be rewarded for it; gaining confidence.
Being part of the decision making process in problem solving situations and learning concepts of responsibility and taking the consequences, whether good or bad.
Showing the importance of team work; discussing, compromising and sacrificing for the greater good and not for personal gains.
Being a strong leader takes a lifetime to master but in short it simply involves practicing what you preach. As we can see in today’s world, most of the effective leaders tend not to be authoritative but rather show such a unique character and personality that others will naturally be drawn to it. In the next article, we will look at how each one of us can evaluate ourselves to see if we possess leadership skills.
Why is it that you follow some people and not others?
What makes them so different ?