Does Your Child Have the Characteristics of a Great Leader

You may be able to tell if your child has the charcacteristics of a great leader at a young age. Some children display leardership traits early on. For others, it takes some time for them to develop the necessary skills. 

A child who possesses leadership abilities at a young age has an edge over those who have yet to realize their leadership potential. They can make the most of their abilities and work to fully develop their potential.

Leadership Traits
A common trait among great leaders is the ability to motivate others. If your child is the one who always seems to be leading siblings or friends in crazy schemes, organizing lemonade stands or getting the neighborhood kids to play a game she made up, she has the ability to motivate people. To help your child work on motivational skills, encourage her to realize her dreams and visions. Help her get enthusiastic about her interests. Her own enthusiasm, combined with other leadership characteristics, can translate into motivation for others.

Integrity is also vital to being a good leader. This is something that parents and families can directly influence. Raise your child to value honesty and doing the right thing, and he's well on his way to being a good leader. Help your child find role models who are honest and ethical, rather than letting him admire leaders who are less than sincere. Since many kids gravitate toward professional athletes as role models, point them toward those pro players that talk about teamwork rather than their individual achievements.

Build Creativity
Encourage your child to express herself, even if her ideas are unorthodox. Creative thinkers make great leaders, and it's essential that your child feels comfortable with her own thoughts and ideas. To help her develop the confidence necessary to express herself without reservation, support her even when her ideas seem outlandish. Part of becoming a good leader is learning from mistakes.

The Importance of Responsibility
Responsibility is another important leadership quality. You can help your child develop responsibility by giving him things to be accountable for, such as the family dog. If your child is old enough to walk the dog, make walking the dog each afternoon a responsibility. Household chores are something that can be doled out at almost any age. Even a young child can help set the table or pick up his toys.

Model Good Leadership
Being a good listener now can help set your child up to be a good listener later. A great leader listens to what those she is leading have to say and acts accordingly. Show interest in what your child does and encourage her to do the best she can, and you'll develop that characteristic in her as well.

It's best to avoid domineering behavior, or you'll raise a child who barks orders and demands absolute compliance. While this seems like leadership to many parents, it's not the sort of behavior that's welcomed in most business settings. Taken to extremes, this behavior can actually diminish leadership skills in your child, because he may become so obsessed with pleasing you that he shuts down his own creative ideas.

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