Quiz: Are You a Leader?

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Are you leadership material? If you've ever worked for an organization in which those on the fast track are clearly visible, you've probably wondered what the people at the top see in them. It takes more than merely being good at your job to be a good leader. The most gifted athletes rarely make good coaches. So it's critical to distinguish between the skill of performance and the skill of leading the performance, two entirely different skill sets.

Take this quiz to determine if you have the potential to become a leader in your organization. Use the scale to rate your skill level. You may wish to ask a trusted peer or friend to complete the same assessment on you. A comparison of the two should yield insight as to where you should concentrate your efforts in developing leadership skills.

Instructions: For each of the statements below evaluate yourself on a scale of one to five related to the leadership skills and qualities described.

Strongly Disagree = 1

Disagree = 2

Unsure = 3

Agree = 4

Strongly agree = 5


1. I know myself, my values and skills, and my strengths and weaknesses.

2. I am confident in meeting most challenges, emerging intact and feeling good about myself.

3. I have a vision of where we ought to be going as a group, community, society and people.

4. I am constantly renewed by what I learn and by my interaction with others.

5. I can identify the very broadest implications of enterprises and projects that others see in narrow terms.

6. I see events today along a continuum in time, with major trends and the sweep of history propelling change.

7. I see the way to success is through steady team-building.

8. I see great wisdom in building the capabilities of others, empowering them and motivating them to do their best.

9. I possess stamina, energy, tenacity and enthusiasm for my work.

10. I have the courage to take on what I know is right, regardless of my critics and detractors.

11. I have high moral character; I know what is right and wrong and act accordingly.

12. I am willing to take risks for something I believe in, whether for people or ideals.

13. I present my ideas logically, forcefully and effectively; my ideas are often adopted.

14. I translate authority as responsibility and assume my share of it.

15. I achieve results through concentrating on clear goals over time; I build small success into something larger.

16. I have a healthy sense of humor, I laugh at myself and keep cynicism and sarcasm in rein.

17. I keep perspective: I know where we are in a process, how far we've come, how far we've got to go and what's important in the short and long run.

18. I am known for my flexibility, responding to a variety of situations with appropriate skills, styles and perceptions.

19. I listen actively to colleagues and co-workers; I hear their words and try to understand their feelings.

20. I maintain an open, warm relationship with others, encouraging them with praise and genuine respect of their views and feelings.

21. I provide others with clear feedback, reinforcing positive contributions, and clarifying and confronting as needed.

22. I mediate for others, helping them find and reinforce the common ground on which solutions can be built.

23. I facilitate interpersonal and group relationships, teaching by example and by making these relationships visible.

24. I help groups maintain discipline and direction toward achievement while suggesting ways in which all members of a group can participate.

If you have asked a peer or friend to complete this quiz, first compare the score for each question for discrepancies between what you feel is your skill level and the assessment offered by your colleague. What was most surprising to you?

Now consider any areas that you or your colleague scored with a 1, 2 or 3. These are the areas that need some development. Choose two or three skills/qualities that you would like to work on first. Use these as a basis for writing leadership development goals and objectives. With a colleague or mentor, discuss each area you have selected, and identify resources to help you improve and practice this skill. With this new insight you are on your way to becoming a leader.

Next: What Your Body Language Says About You >>


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