If you believe great leaders are made, and not born, then you probably would also quickly agree that leadership is about choice. Choice would include a decision to constantly hone and develop your knowledge, skills, and abilities to demonstrate a greater leadership presence. While there are many skills that exemplify leadership and while in practice a very broad skillset may be necessary to tackle the demands of being a high performing leader, there are at least three that are universal for any leader of any workplace generation.
Integrity. People who are serious about high performance know that a lack of integrity at any level can quickly derail success. Like ethics some definitions of integrity may be subjective, but individuals who fail to connect with a like mindset for integrity will be less likely to engage and stay committed to future efforts.
Honesty. Can you trust someone who is dishonest? Trust is the lifeblood of any organized effort. Fear may sometimes (inappropriately) temporarily overcome all obstacles but most group efforts will fall short of expectations when there is a lack of trust. Often the root cause of mistrust can be directly linked to dishonesty.
Communication. You cannot lead without effective communication. Keep in mind that even the most effective communicator will face difficulty if they do not have integrity and they are dishonest. Remember that communication is not always the spoken or written word; it is sometimes gestures, actions, or even attitude that makes a statement.
Regardless of the workplace generation you represent or the breadth of generations you may be responsible to lead, having a solid skillset and constantly honing your craft as a leader will be critical for continued success.
Make the right choice. Decide to lead.
Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker, and coach that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is the author of the newly released book, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce. Reach him through his website at DennisEGilbert.com or by calling +1 646.546.5553.