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Definition of Leadership: Four Communication Skills That Make or Break All  Leaders

What's the definition of great leadership? Great leaders have mastered their ability to inspire & move people to take positive action.

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“Our chief want is someone who will inspire us to be what we know we could be.”
Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Four Skills...

There are many important leadership skills to master, but these Four Skills are the four that will help you build more trust and more engagement than any others.  These skills are so powerful because they:

  • Give you a competitive advantage.  The employees and clients you work with will want to work with you.   Therefore every work project or sales conversation will be easier, natural and authentic.
  • Impact every aspect of your life in a positive way.  As you employ these skills in every relationship you will build greater and greater degrees of trust and honest conversation.

An easy way to remember these skills is with the acronym: C.A.L.L.  

My Informal Survey of Thousands Around What They Want...

Since starting my Consulting business in 2004, I've asked thousands of employees to share their definition of leadership greatness by telling me about the actions of their best and worst leader interactions. Their answers are amazingly similar across all industries (from aviation to steel to medical sales to home builders to technical firms) and all levels of employees (from the line worker to the CEO).

The 'themes' revealed, when people describe what charateristics mattered to them in their best leader relationships were:

  • "Great listener."
  • "Fair."
  • "Knowledgeable."
  • "Gave me confidence, believed in me."
  • "Gave me confidence in their company, believed in their product."
  • "Inspired me to my best."
  • "I trusted this person, that s/he had my best interests in mind."
  • "Was straight with me - told me when there were problems AND when things were good."
  • "Made sure that my goals and objectives were understood and met."
  • "Looked out for my development."
  • "Asked for my opinion and input."
  • "I wanted  to work with this person. I never dreaded our meetings.  I did more for this person then I did for others...because of the confidence and trust I felt."

Leaders have many different styles and personalities, but the best definition of leadership greatness comes from what people need to be effective, and that remains consistent. While my "study" in my workshops IS anecdotal, research does back me up.

'Best Leader' Research, Hard Evidence:

Research tells us that when people work for and with people who build trust and master the skills of listening, address problems factually and inviting discussion the relationships are stronger and more productive.

The powerful Survey Team at the Gallup Organization interviewed millions of employees. They met with 7,935 twenty-five person teams in 36 countries. Their Survey Results prove the bottom-line impact of mastering skills that build trust and relationships: 

They determined that if a twenty-five member team was motivated and inspired (they use the term: engaged) the team produced:

  • $80,000+ higher monthly revenue
  • 1-4% higher monthly profit
  • 103% higher success rate
  • Higher customer loyalty
  • Lower unwanted turnover

Wow! What if all of your interactions could create relationships that would create that kind of return?  You can. It does not need to be  hard or complicated. But it does require practice, desire and focus.

Check out our Essential Leadership Performance Tools Workshops, here.

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