The Inspiring Leader Stanford Business Brief with Jack Zenger
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What defines great leadership? Using original research on 360-degree feedback data for thousands of managers, Jack Zenger, with colleagues Joseph Folkman and Scott Edinger, identified 16 specific competencies the most effective leaders share. Of these, the ability to inspire and motivate others to high performance had the most significant, positive impact on the performance of the organization. And yet, it was the area in which managers were weakest.
Inspiring others is a "soft skill," one that many believe you need to be born with to possess. But in evaluating the research, Dr. Zenger and his colleagues determined that inspiring others to greatness is, in fact, something that can and should be learned. The attributes of inspiring leaders, such as being a role model or a change champion, can be acquired. The skills, ranging from goal setting to developing staff to being a good communicator, are learnable. And even the most critical characteristic of an inspiring leader--the ability to make an emotional connection with a team--is achievable, by building on key strengths in your own personality and leadership approach.
John H. (Jack) Zenger, Cofounder and CEO of Zenger Folkman, is the author or co-author of numerous books, including "The Inspiring Leader" and "The Extraordinary Leader." He received his MBA from UCLA and a PhD from the University of Southern California.