Five Essentials for Effective Leadership


Warren Bennis, one of the most respected authors on the subject of leadership and founder of The Leadership Institute at USC, writes that the crisis of leadership in our institutions and governments is in many ways the most urgent and dangerous threat facing the world today because “it is insufficiently recognized and little understood.” Drawing on 40 years of studying leadership, Bennis says that effective leaders share five characteristics. They have:

1. A strong sense of purpose, a passion, a conviction, a sense of wanting to do something important to make a difference.
2. Are capable of developing and sustaining deep and trusting relationships. They seem to be constant, caring, and authentic with other people.
3. Are purveyors of hope and have positive illusions about reality.
4. Have a balance in their lives between work, power, and family or outside activities. They do not tie up all of their self-esteem in their position.
5. Demonstrate a bias toward action and while not reckless, they do not resist taking risks.

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