Results Create Opportunity.... Then What?

I am often approached by employees asking what I look for in future leaders in my organization.

I've got great results... but ...."how can I get promoted?"

Over the years, I have shared a long and growing list...


  • unwavering integrity
  • confident humility
  • passionate vision
  • teamwork down, up, and sideways
  • energetic creativity
  • change leadership
  • zealousness for employee development

Which then leads to the next can I develop these skills and get noticed?

Again I have a list...

  • Develop a gaggle of fantastic mentors
  • Look at leaders you admire, and learn those skills
  • Pay even closer attention to leaders who annoy you, and figure out why
  • Take lateral moves that make you an all-terrain player
  • Volunteer for special projects
  • Talk to people who are doing your dream job, learn what it takes, and express interest

I've come to realize that these lists are a lot of advice, and more than any human being can take in one sitting.  Conversations like this can be overwhelming and feel like a bit of a development deluge.

These days my list is more simple.

When looking for future leader in my organization, I consider 3 questions:

  1. How well do you know yourself-- are you working to grow as a leader?
  2. Do your results last?
  3. What do your people say about you?

Every organization is different... and what is needed and valued from leaders will vary as well.  Across organizations and contexts, these 3 questions have held constant.

What are your top 3?  How are you inspiring the best answers to these questions in yourself and others?

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