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Four Crucial Components of Leadership

March 5, 2024

I’ve heard it said that the most important thing a leader brings to their team is their energy.

This truth struck me at a pivotal time in my life. A mentor I respected told me that my energy had a profound effect, both positively and negatively, on my team. 

When I was excited, the team was more committed to an idea. When I was checked out, the team was less engaged. My disposition, my attitude, and my tone mattered to the success of those around me. 

Lately I’ve been considering some of the more intangible elements of leadership. What are those crucial components that drive success? I believe that energy is one of them, but there are also other things to consider when looking for people to bring onto your team or qualities to promote within your organization. Here are my top four:

1. Energy
After the introduction, this one is a given. A leader’s personal energy is crucial to the success of their influence. This energy includes their disposition and their outlook on the work your organization is doing. Personally, I value people who are underdogs and optimists. These people naturally have a positive outlook on life even when the odds are stacked against them, and they are great for increasing morale on any team. 

2. Enthusiasm
Enthusiasm is different from energy. This is rooted in a passion and ability to rally the team around a common goal. We use the word inspire at ADDO a lot, and it means “to breathe life into.” I want enthusiastic leaders who can breathe life into the people on our team and the projects they are creating.

3. Execution
To put it simply, can you do the job? If you were thinking my first two components were fluffy, rest assured that I’m not naive.

Energy and enthusiasm will help, but you have to be able to get things done.

A great leader must be able to accomplish their work with excellence in order to have a positive impact on the people around them. 

4. Edge
This one might be the most undervalued and overlooked, but I believe it’s pivotal. Leaders must have a decision-making edge and a bias for action. They have the courage to make the hard calls, and when the time comes, they pull the trigger, even when it’s difficult.

When I am looking for a leader on my team, I want people with energy, enthusiasm, the ability to execute, and a decision-making edge. 

I’m curious: What would be on your list of crucial components for leaders?


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