Leadership is more about responsibility than ability. Honesty, creating a positive climate, and trusting people are the important character traits of a leader. All too often, unfortunately, people with those strengths lack the courage or initiative to “step up.”
Courage is a learned trait either from example (parent, teacher) or from experience. A leader must not be afraid to fail. The measure of a leader is not that he/she might fail, but how that person bounces back!
Initiative is also a learned trait, either by example or role model or an intrinsic willingness to help others.
As a kid, I wanted to be a coach. My role model was my father. And while he never pushed me to follow my goal, what he did by his actions showed me the positive and rewarding side of leadership. It has become a life-long project: first as a sports coach, next a school principal and district superintendent, as well as an NFL referee. In fact, one mentor created for me the title:
“The man in-charge.”
Finally, leadership is not easy. Remind me to tell you the story about “the squirrel.”