There are a myriad of different leadership models and approaches, many of which are highly prescriptive about the type of personality and qualities you need in order to be an effective leader. For example, qualities like charisma, persuasiveness, emotional intelligence, and courage are often highlighted as essential qualities for leadership effectiveness and success.
However, recent research shows that successful leaders can have very different personalities and qualities that they draw on in achieving their results. What they do have in common though, is a true understanding of and ability to leverage their “Leadership Edge” (their unique strengths, abilities, and skills) to influence and inspire others to achieve extraordinary results.
Effective leadership is also about “Positive Stretch” (stretching themselves and their team to push the boundaries and achieve in the upper range of their collective strengths and capabilities). This is particularly
relevant in today’s uncertain and competitive environment and markets, where organizations (private, public, and
voluntary) are all being challenged to do more with less, to work smarter and optimize the discretionary effort, ideas, and morale of their workforce.
Our experience and the latest research show that the most effective leaders are masters at the art and science of stretch. They never stand still, and they follow the four Stretch Leadership™ Habits. They establish a clear “picture of success” for themselves and their organization, Sharing Vision (1). They break the shared vision down into manageable Stretch goals, Sparking Engagement (2) with their team. They Skillfully Execute (3) every step of the way, celebrating success and Sustaining Progress (4) and positive energy throughout. In short, they push the boundaries of thinking and possibility, looking for new and innovative ways of doing things to achieve the organization’s goals, while at the same time advancing their own careers.