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How to Develop Legendary Leadership Skills

What makes one fit to lead? Is it qualifications, experience or just being bossy? How do we ensure that leadership not only gets compliance, but also gets results, motivates the team, builds character, boosts morale, productivity and loyalty, etc.? In other words, how do we tap into leadership skills that are nothing short of legendary?

Wielding the title of leader, firstly, is a responsibility. The roles and functions of leadership, requires the wielder to be widely dynamic, on multiple fronts. Sometimes empowering, sometimes firm; sometimes transactional, sometimes transformational; sometimes psychologist, other times a coach; sometimes, all of these things at once, but never inflexible or shortsighted.

Motivational speaker, Tony Robbins, describes leadership as, "the ability to inspire a team to achieve a certain goal." In the same context, he articulates that the definition of leadership is to "influence, inspire and help others become their best selves, (while) building their skills and achieving goals along the way." That's quite an agreeable definition.

The catch is that this type of leadership is attained by working from the inside-out, and that's the direction we will travel throughout this piece. Let us begin.

Know yourself

As El Capitan, what do you know that you’re bringing to the table and how is it going to serve you and the greater good? To know yourself, you'll need to identify and design a definitive path, with a clear understanding of your vision and purpose. Apply the knowledge of what you know about your own strengths and weaknesses so that it will help to enhance your capabilities, the way you are able to apply yourself and the intentionality, for the outcomes you’d like to inspire.

Additional ways that will allow you to continue to connect with who you are and the way you’d like to show up, in your leadership, are:

  • Committing to continuous self-development

  • Receiving coaching and coach training

  • Practicing emotional intelligence and self-compassion

  • Asking yourself challenging questions

Don’t try to be perfect

Both Harvard Business Review and Forbes believe that it is okay for leaders to ask for help, and with good reason. The ability to ask for help, as a leader, signals humility and that you are not afraid to not be perfect. It sends the message that you are relatable; a human being like everyone else.

Despite the naysaying, there is strength in vulnerability, and taking into consideration, all the times that you would encourage others to seek help when necessary, you asking for help will reflect that you are one who practices what they preach. As a leader, you are connecting with real people, so help them to relate with you, by showing that it’s okay to ask for help, or to, occasionally, say that you don’t know. It’s not going to make you weak or incompetent. On the contrary, they’ll respect you more for keeping it real.

Help develop the leader in others

The best leaders are the ones, who enable and empower others to be leaders, themselves. Think about it, no one likes being micromanaged, or deprived of autonomy. Matter of fact, we, as humans, have a psychological need for autonomy. On that path towards legendary leadership, you should encourage your team to take risks and to get into the habit of making decisions that don’t necessarily require your input.

Teach and develop the leader in them by being generous with your knowledge, so that they build up the confidence needed to trust themselves and to practice accountability for the choices, actions and judgment calls they come to make. The key is to remain as encouraging and patient as can be, and pretty soon, you will see competent leadership start to blossom, under your wing; a telltale sign of exceptional leadership.

Practice inclusivity

Good leadership unites. It brings the team together and ensures that everyone feels welcomed. Inclusivity means that, where relevant, the input and feedback of all is encouraged. describes inclusivity as, “the fact or policy of not excluding members or participants on the grounds of gender, race, class, sexuality, disability, etc.”

Leadership that exudes inclusivity ensures that there’s a space for everyone to participate or feel apart of; from the extroverts to the introverts