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There are many important roles that leaders play. The common thread through all of them is that leadership is about enabling the success of others.

Leaders are supporters, developers, guides, team builders, and imaginers. They are culture caretakers, roadblock removers and inspirers.

All of these roles require being other-focused.

Leadership is other-focused: 8 required roles

Leaders are Supporters
Helping others reach their goals

Leaders are Developers
Helping others improve their capabilities and reach for their potential

Leaders are Guides
Helping others succeed in our organization and in life

Leaders are Team Builders
Helping others succeed together

Leaders are Imaginers
Helping others see a better future and learn how to create it

Leaders are Culture Caretakers
Helping others thrive in a safe, high-trust environment

Leaders are Roadblock Removers
Helping others maintain momentum and avoid frustration

Leaders are Inspirers
Helping others reach higher, think in new ways, and grow. Helping them become more capable than they ever thought possible

As leaders, we seek to bring out the best in individuals, the best in teams, and the best in organizations.

We pull together diverse collections of people striving toward common goals. We create the conditions for success. We build trust. We model and reinforce ethical choices. Doing these things consistently enables those we lead to do their best work.

Great leaders help others reach higher, think in new ways, grow, and become more capable than they ever thought possible.

How do we define our success as leaders? It’s simple. Great leaders create the conditions for the success of others.

They build trust and an ethical culture, and they help people do their best work. Their best work fuels the economic and social success of the organization.

Great leaders believe “I succeed when they succeed,” and in shows in their daily choices.


Do you agree that these 8 roles are important for leader success? Did a leader help you imagine a better future and reach for your potential? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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