Skip to main content

The Four Capacities Every Great leader Needs (and Very Few Have)

| November 23, 2010

by Jim Bruce

Today’s reading is “The Four Capacities Every Great Leader Needs (and Very Few Have)” <> by Tony Schwartz, CEO of The Energy Project, a company that helps individuals and organizations fuel energy, engagement, focus, and productivity by harnessing the science of high performance.  This entry appeared in FastCompany’s Expert Blog on October 15, 2010.  (It and other blog entries by Tony Schwartz can also be found at <>.)

In this blog entry  Schwartz provides four lessons that he learned during his leadership journey:

1.  Great leaders recognize strengths in us that we don’t always yet fully see in ourselves.

2.  Rather than simply trying to get more out of us, great leaders seek to understand and meet our needs, above all a compelling mission beyond our immediate self-interest, or theirs.

3.  Great leaders take the time to clearly define what success looks like, and then empower and trust us to figure out the best way to achieve it.

4.  The best of leaders – a tiny fraction – have the capacity to embrace their own opposites, most notably vulnerability alongside strength, and confidence balanced by humility.

There’s much more in the piece and I urge you to read it in the author’s own words.  It’s powerful stuff, lessons we an all profit from.

Do take some time to reflect on how you can incorporate these lessons into your practices.

And, Happy Thanksgiving.  In spite of the continuing gloomy economic times, we each have much to be thankful for.  .  .  .  .     jim