9 Characteristics of an Emerging Leader

American Income Life’s Senior VP of Field Operations, Rob Falvo, suggests there are nine characteristics that identify an emerging leader. Do you embody any of these characteristics?
Rob Falvo - Senior VP of Field Operations for American Income Life/National Income Life

Rob Falvo - Senior VP of Field Operations for American Income Life/National Income Life

1 ) Cultivating a High Standard of Personal Ethics

  • A person who refuses to accept responsibility lacks the ethical armor to stand against temptation.
  • More than anything else, ethics is a study in right and wrong.
  • Ethics in business is the cornerstone of success. Without a commitment to the right conduct, any enterprise is ultimately doomed. I’m talking dollars and cents.
2 ) High Energy

  • Great leaders are simply not worn out by dealing with petty issues. These people not only know right from wrong, but also know the difference between interesting and important.
  • An effective leader must develop a sense of direction and be able to draw clear distinctions between what is truly important to the organization and what is merely interesting.

3 ) Working Priorities

  • Work your priority list from the top to the bottom. (Most people jump in and work from the middle)
  • “If you’ve got a frog to swallow, don’t look at it too long. If you’ve got more than one to swallow, swallow the biggest one first!”

4 ) Having Courage

  • The courageous one is willing to walk near the edge and do things slightly off balance when necessary – not for the sake of living dangerously, but rather for the sake of getting the job done.

5 ) Working Hard with Commitment & Dedication

  • Are you a committed and dedicated hard worker? What do you think people are saving all of their energy for?
  • Nobody ever worked himself or herself to death in a job they loved.
  • Most of the successful leaders I’ve met don’t give much conscious consideration to what they are being paid. They do what they love and the money comes with it.

6 ) Getting Goal Oriented

  • Why have goals in your organization?
  • When people in your agency, staff or team become a contradiction to the goals you have established in the best interests of the organization and its people, it’s time to part company.
  • We are not placed in jobs to keep them the same; we’re put in jobs to make them better.

7 ) Maintaining a Constant Enthusiasm

  • Inspired Enthusiasm is contagious.
  • As a leader, your people look to you for enthusiasm.
  • Enthusiasm comes from witnessing the accomplishment of your daily goals that are part of a larger plan.

I hope this next thought will pop your eyes open like a good whiff of ammonia. I mentioned earlier that inspired enthusiasm is contagious.

  • If you don’t have contagious inspired enthusiasm, then whatever you do have is also contagious.

Now that’s a scary thought!

“Accomplishment is the appetizer of enthusiasm, followed closely by sound relationships that build character.”

8 ) Staying Level-Headed

  • They have the ability to organize chaotic situations.
  • They see things as they really ARE, as opposed to how they wish they were.
  • We need to fix problems rather than talk about them.
  • I find it interesting that long after the problems are solved or no longer relevant, some people keep talking about them…
  • Not those who approach life realistically. They act without being told to because they understand that, in the real world, problems aren’t stopping places; they are decision points.

9 ) Helping Others to Grow

  • All great leaders should have a desire to help others grow.
  • When an organization functions in a nurturing environment where pettiness is eliminated and ideas are openly exchanged, the result is synergy.
  • With Synergy, the organization and the individuals within the organization will become more than the sum of their parts.

An organization will never rise above the quality of its leadership.

So ask yourself:
On a scale of 1 to 10, how do you stack up on each of these characteristics?

About Mark Ting

Mark Ting is a Staff Writer at Torchmark Corporation, writing about American Income Life and National Income Life Insurance Companies. Google+

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