What’s More Important to Success than Leadership Skills

You’re a colossal screw-up if you believe success hinges on skills. It doesn’t matter how skilled you are at delegating, for example, if you’re a dishonest jerk-hole.

Hitler was an exceptional communicator.

Skills are the simplest component of successful leadership.

Potter - pottery

Pity the fool who is too busy shaping people to be shaped by others.

4 areas high-impact leaders develop:

  1. Relationships
  2. Character
  3. Beliefs
  4. Skills

Relationships:

“Show me your friends and I’ll show you your future.” Anonymous

Of all the areas leaders neglect, relationship-building is the easiest.

5 reasons leaders neglect relationship-building:

  1. Perceived brilliance. If you weren’t so dang smart, you would realize the value of relationships.
  2. Time pressure. Who has time for conversations over coffee?
  3. Short-sightedness. You wrongly believe you can handle any new challenges on your own.
  4. Better skills. Persistent failures still believe their way is THE right way.
  5. Natural inclinations. Of all the people who could expand their potential with relationship-building, introverts top the list.

Shapers:

Who is shaping your life?

Pity the fool who is too busy shaping people to be shaped by others.

Project: Make a list of important people in your life. How might you invite them in? How might they shape you? What might you learn from them?

Letting people shape you enhances your ability to shape others.

Potters:

Potters add to your life.

Someone with skills and experience far beyond yours is going to knock on your door. Invite them in.

They’re going to say something that seems stupid. That’s the thing you need to dig into.

Adopt some of their practices, especially if those practices feel uncomfortable. (Don’t do something that causes harm.)

Wood carver/sculptor

Surprising beauty emerges after a sculptor's work is done.

Sculptor:

Stopping is harder than starting.

Someone is going to enter your life to help you cut away worn-out strategies and self-sabotage. You’re going to think they’re wrong. Give their suggestion a test run.

Surprising beauty emerges after a sculptor’s work is done.

What helps leaders build great relationships?

What relationships have helped you lead more effectively?