If you can’t find a good role model, be one.” – Gale Anne Hurd (American film producer)

When we think of leaders, we often think of popular or well-known personalities like Nelson Mandela or Mahatma Gandhi. But, as we have seen in this chapter on leadership, there are many types of leaders and we all have some leadership qualities! Many children have role models or people they look up to, like their parents, teachers, TV personalities, etc.

Role models can also be important when we grow up. People can have different role models, depending on the things they are passionate about. For example, if you have a passion for sports, then a famous sports player might be your role model or the person you admire. Others could be fashion bloggers or fashion designers, politicians, classmates or colleagues who are good at something, celebrities, etc.

Such a person who you look up to can influence the choices you make in life, such as career choices or choices to attain certain goals. So think about a leader closer to home – someone you admire, aspire to be like, or consider as your role model. Is there someone now or in your past who you look up to? Who do/did you want to be like?

What are the qualities of this person that makes you admire them or look up to them? Some qualities of effective leaders or role models are:

  • Trust and good communication
  • Inviting of creative input from their team
  • Not afraid to try something new
  • Encourage teams to learn from prior efforts
  • Assist their team to stay focused on their goals and objectives
  • Not afraid to acknowledge that problems may be complex
  • Understand that problem-solving is a team concern
  • Provides support and accepts support
  • Able to work in different combinations and with different people
  • Good listeners who tune in and respond to the needs and ideas of others
  • Able to present ideas in a clear and simple way
  • Respectful of the needs and capacities of team members

You practice!

Write down who is the person you admire. Write down 3 reasons of why you admire this person and look up to them. Also think about reasons why other people might admire you.