In this Expert Insight Interview, Libby Gill discusses a book she co-authored, Leadership Reckoning: Can Higher Education Develop the Leaders We Need? Libby Gill an executive coach works with executives and entrepreneurs.
This Expert Insight Interview discusses:
- Leadership is not taught at universities
- Importance of “soft” skills
- The most common misconceptions about what it means to be a leader
There is a lot of focus on education in today’s world. We are going through a massive change in higher education because of the pandemic, but truth be told, we were going through an enormous change even before the pandemic started.
Universities are great at producing a highly educated workforce and specialists in various areas, they don’t necessarily create great leaders. These institutions don’t seem to prepare people for leadership in the way that they should. This is precisely what Libby and her co-authors decided to focus on in this book.
Leadership is a decision. You are not born to be a leader; you become one by aspiring to lead. We can all make that choice, and that is what leadership identity is all about. This choice puts us on a path of learning the necessary “soft” skills required to become a leader. These skills are often undervalued, but they are essential.
If you can learn about proper communication, collaboration, empathy, and other such skills early on, you’ll give yourself a massive advantage for the rest of your career. It all starts with self-awareness, unfortunately, most people struggle with this, especially at a young age.
Misconceptions About Leaders
We should not confuse leadership with management. Although the two terms are clearly related, being in a high position within a hierarchy does not make one a leader. The first and most important leadership skill is leading yourself. This means understanding who you are, how you can grow, and how you intend to build your leadership-related and technical skills.
Leadership is also not about being loud or aggressive in your approach. Leaders can have all sorts of personalities, and the key is to find your style of leading.
John is the Amazon bestselling author of Winning the Battle for Sales: Lessons on Closing Every Deal from the World’s Greatest Military Victories and Social Upheaval: How to Win at Social Selling. A globally acknowledged Sales & Marketing thought leader, speaker, and strategist. He is CSMO at Pipeliner CRM. In his spare time, John is an avid Martial Artist.