*Post by Shannon Miles
Recently I was asked by a friend of mine to answer the following questions for her college business class. Everything is focused around leadership and I thought they would be good questions for you to ask yourselves, also. I will post the remaining Q&A in my post next month.
1. What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess? I believe every leader should be a servant. If leaders are only interested in advancing themselves and their agendas, they will not be successful long-term. The more a leader serves those they lead, the more fulfilling their careers will be and the more their teams will elevate them.
2. What is the one behavior or trait that you have seen derail more leaders’ careers? Pride. When a leader is prideful, they do not look for ways to improve or grow. They make themselves a target for others to tear down.
3. Which is most important to your organization—mission, core values or vision? Running a young company, all of these things are essential. Our vision is perhaps most important at this time because we need people to rally around the vision. We are moving to more focus on the mission, and eventually the core values will be solidified. In my opinion, underlying theme for all mission, core values and vision is culture. We are extremely focused on developing a strong culture for our organization.
4. Does a leader need to be motivated? Absolutely. Leaders have a very difficult role and need to be supported in it. If leaders have difficulty getting themselves motivated, they need to be motivated by other leaders as they strive to learn and grow. It can be very lonely to lead an organization because you always want to appear strong and “put together” for those you lead. If you become demotivated as a leader, your team will be demotivated also.
5. Do you believe a leader is born, or made? I believe some people have no desire to lead and they are not gifted in that capacity. However, for some people, they may be insecure or unsure of their own abilities. Sometimes all it takes for them is to have someone believe in them and encourage them to grow. In that way, I believe a leader can be made.