The word “leadership” is often misunderstood in the workplace. Most people think it requires a title of some sort. You’re a leader if you supervise others or if you have a few fancy letters after your name.
I don’t think leaders are defined by position or organizational hierarchy. To me, leaders are defined by their actions. Consequently, I believe that anyone in any role has the ability to be a leader. Likewise, some people who are in traditional “leadership” roles definitely are not leaders by my estimation.
Being a leader in the workplace doesn’t require any special training or knowledge, but it does require character. It takes a little added effort and a thoughtful approach. But it’s not difficult. We’re talking about small, everyday actions here—nothing extravagant.
I also believe that leadership is a skill worth honing—regardless of your professional aspirations. Whether or not you want some official title in the future, practicing leadership is rewarding in and of itself. [Read more…]