The Most Successful Leaders – part 4

With this post I am resuming the list of the 15 things the most successful leaders do automatically, every day, according to an article in Forbes Magazine. This is the fourth of five posts on this topic. Below I list the first nine things that were presented in previous posts and then add the next three with my comments. To see more detail on the first nine items, you can visit my previous posts on this article. ( and and

1. Make others feel safe to speak up
2. Make decisions
3. Communicate expectations
4. Challenge people to think
5. Be accountable to others
6. Lead by example
7. Measure and reward performance
8. Provide continuous feedback
9. Properly allocate and deploy talent

10. Ask questions, seek counsel. My thoughts: The most successful leaders are not afraid to ask questions and seek counsel. They are secure enough to admit when they don’t know something, and smart enough to seek help from those who do. As a leader, you may feel pressure to have the answers and to be the one who knows, after all, you are the leader and your team is counting on you. But the most successful leaders understand that they can’t possibly know everything. They surround themselves with people who complement their own knowledge and abilities and then they ask these experts when they need advice.

11. Problem solve, avoid procrastination. My thoughts: The most successful leaders know how to quickly dissect a problem, analyze the situation, and determine the appropriate course of action. Once they set the strategic path, they implement the strategy to keep the organization moving forward. There is a delicate balance between analyzing the situation and taking decisive action. Over-analysis can lead to delays that frustrate your team, yet being too decisive can get your organization heading down the wrong path quickly. In these situations, it’s important to gather information quickly so you can use it to solve the problem. Analyze the information you have, and then, after careful consideration, make a decision and move forward.

12. Positive energy and attitude. My thoughts: Successful leaders are positive and enthusiastic. They create positive energy for the organization through their attitude and approach to both successes and challenges. These leaders celebrate successes and make sure these positive results are communicated to all to create positive momentum for the organization. But they also react positively to challenges. They stress the opportunities created by challenges and focus on how these challenges can help the organization get better and stronger. They are not deterred by challenges or failures. Team members like working for enthusiastic leaders because they know these leaders will be consistent with their positive attitude no matter how difficult things may get.

The most successful leaders do these things automatically, every day. So this week be secure enough to ask questions when you don’t know the answer. You can’t know everything; so seek counsel from others who do. Work on solving problems quickly. Analyze the information you have and make the best decision you can. But make the decision and move on. Energy and enthusiasm are necessary qualities of a leader. Most people want to follow someone who is positive and energetic. Do you know anyone who wants to follow someone who is negative and pessimistic? Right, neither do I. So make a decision this week to be positive and spread your positive energy with others. You don’t need to be the boss to spread positive energy. We can do this at any level of the organization, so have a positive week and spread this positivity with others!

Thanks for reading,


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