Some qualities to look for when deciding a potential leader is ready for coaching include:

  • Integrity and character.
  • Willingness to learn.
  • High engagement in their current job.
  • The tendency to step into informal leadership when the opportunity presents itself.

One of my 50 laws states that successful coaching of any kind depends on the readiness of the person being coached. Nearly all jobs at any level now require some level of leadership qualities, but coaching is designed to take those raw qualities and develop them more fully. Leadership development is vital for all organizations, and the right leaders must be developed for an optimal result.

Looking For Readiness

Potential leaders who are ready for coaching display the basic characteristics of leadership, as I have defined in my book “Intelligent Leadership.” In their current positions, they have shown good character, they are fair, and they conduct themselves with integrity. Without these characteristics, their eventual leadership will be poor, and dissension among team members will result.

Besides character, potential leaders must also show a willingness to learn new skills. A level of self-awareness is necessary in order to assimilate new information and apply it to the emerging leadership style, which must be discerned as part of the process.

The three main leadership styles are head leadership, heart leadership, and gut leadership. It isn’t necessary for a potential leader to know their leadership style before coaching begins, but the ability to discern this as coaching happens is necessary.

The ability to relate well with co-workers and management should be evident, but getting along doesn’t always mean submissiveness. Conflict can be a necessary part of leadership, and it’s important for potential leaders not to be conflict avoiders. Learning to handle conflict productively and positively is an important part of leadership that can’t be ignored.

Leadership potential doesn’t mean people won’t make mistakes along the way. 

Learning to Lead

Potential leaders should be highly engaged in their current positions and eager to expand their skills and duties. When asked to do something in a different way, they are willing to adjust and learn. Some potential leaders may already be informally leading their teams or may be the one who steps up when leadership is needed in the moment.

These potential leaders may not always seem to do everything right when they step forward to lead. It is possible that someone who has made a mess of a situation could still be a good leader once they have proper coaching that gives them the skills they need to improve on their imperfect natural abilities.

There is not always a big difference between a leader who causes problems and an effective leader. Coaching can smooth out some of the rough edges and develop the potential that exists.

Do you have employees that need coaching to develop their leadership potential? Or maybe you would like to develop your own leadership potential? Check out my leadership coaching services to see what I have to offer.


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