True Leaders Make Others Feel Important

Great leadership is never about satisfying the ego or personal agenda of a leader, or a small group of members. It is certainly never about being aloof, or setting ones self on some sort of pedestal, expecting others to treat you regally. In my over three decades of working closely with well over a thousand leaders, I have observed that every potential leader I have ever observed only achieves greatness when he adopts an attitude of service to others, where he endeavors to consistently make others feel both important and relevant. Great leader realize that they can never be completely effective unless they are able to effectively communicate, and that effective communication requires truly caring for others, and taking their feelings into consideration. John Dewey wrote, "The deepest urge in human nature is the desire to feel important."

1. How can leaders make others feel important? One of the easiest ways to express gratitude verbally, by going out of one's way to thank someone for even minor assistance. Leaders must thank members for their support, while maintaining their integrity so that others realize that the thanks are indeed genuine, rather than simply some empty words and platitudes.

2. Great leaders never blame others for anything. Firstly, they realize it is not only unproductive, but often counter- productive. Has the leader properly trained someone before delegating duties and responsibilities? Has the leader properly and effectively communicating what he wants achieved so that the individual understands what's necessary, the time and effort commitment required? Does the leader monitor the situation on an ongoing basis? Instead of blaming or negative criticism, does the leader give constructive critiques that both help the progress and quality of the performance, but also makes the individual feel good about himself?

Many in leadership fail to recognize that one "atta-boy" and a pat on the back often accomplishes far more in a positive manner than blame, harsh criticism, etc. One moment of ungratefulness by a leader often demotivates volunteers, and creates a situation where becomes difficult to enlist volunteers. Every human being wants to feel wanted and appreciated! People want to feel important, and thus when a leader publicly thanks someone, it feeds that impulse and need. Effective leaders, by definition, are excellent and proficient motivators, and understand that praise and thanks create positive reactions and motivates others to follow the leader's vision and adopt it as their own. Unless someone is able to get constituents to become believers and followers, who is he leading? One cannot be a leader if no one wants to follow him. Leaders must accept and understand this truism, so that they can put themselves in the proper mindset to be willing to realize that the leader is not the important one, but the organization and its members are!

With over 30 years consultative sales, marketing, training, managerial, and operations experience, Richard Brody has trained sales and marketing people in numerous industries, given hundreds of seminars, appeared as company spokesperson on over 200 radio and television programs. He's negotiated, arranged and organized hundreds of events.

Richard's owned businesses, been a COO, CEO, and Director of Development, as well as a consultant. His company Website is, and he can be followed on Twitter @rgbrody. For great information on many topics, visit PLAN2LEAD's Facebook page and LIKE ( )

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