The World’s #1 Executive Coaching and Business Coaching Blog (2017-2021)
Leadership Skills We Often Learn in Grade School
March 1, 2023 | Category: Blog, Intelligent Leadership
Cooperation requires leadership. Since we cooperate from early childhood, we learn the basic concept of leadership sooner than one would think. We begin shaping our leadership skills in grade school, which is why this stage of our education carries such importance. Grade school must teach us the value of honesty, effective communication, and the importance of taking responsibility for our actions and decisions.
Humans cooperate. The ability to work together toward a shared, complex goal is what makes humans special and different from most animals. Cooperation demands and begets leadership assuming leadership is natural for all humans. We are all leaders in different ways. We don’t all lead large corporations, but we do act as leaders for our families or for ourselves.
Many of our leadership predilections are ingrained. Whenever you see a couple of children playing, one of them naturally acts as a leader. Class units have their natural leaders, whether we call them instigators or “cool kids.” Personalities capable of influencing others emerge early.
Leaders naturally emerge out of every human group.
Leadership skills are life skills. Schools already teach some of them, acting as leadership coaching hubs, as they should. We often pick up some of our leadership skills as early as grade school.
How can schools encourage and develop the leadership skills of their students? What are the skills and qualities schools teach kids that develop their leadership skills directly or indirectly?
Honesty and Communication
School rewards honesty, trustworthiness, and good communication. Every school, regardless of where it is in the world, observes these basic values. Good schools go further. In addition to rewarding kids for being confident speakers, they also encourage them to learn how to listen actively and speak at the right time.
Honesty and good intentions inspire trust in others. Grade school pupils learn this adage quickly.
The Benefits of Open, Creative, and Flexible Mindsets
Schools don’t focus on executive coaching. No one should expect them to do so. They do, however, teach students that to succeed in life, they must be creative, open-minded, and flexible.
Flexibility is a sensitive issue, as it takes a real effort to implement in education, and some schools/education systems neglect it. There’s an increasing focus on it, however, as its leadership-wise benefits are undeniable.
Education gets students to process increasingly complex ideas. Outstanding education gets kids to cooperate to come up with answers to complex problems.
Leadership coaching values the power of example and responsible leadership. Outstanding leaders do not order people around. They actively showcase behaviors they expect from reports.
Student leaders make decisions and assume responsibility for them. Owning choices and actions is a lesson in leadership maturity.
The Power of a Positive Mindset
Good teachers motivate students. They don’t just provide them with information they need to process. They specify the purpose of their educations and motivate them to set goals. Leadership coaching adopts a similar approach, encouraging leaders to work out ways to empower and motivate employees.
Positivity is a powerful facilitator of progress.
A growth mindset allows students to achieve goals. Being able to assume such a mindset is a fundamental leadership skill.
Leading by Example
In school, older students often act as role models for younger peers. Kids have a natural proclivity for copying behaviors they deem positive, whether this means behaviors society approves or frowns upon.
Older students understand the power of example and know they wield influence over their younger peers. How they use this influence is a leadership lesson in and of itself.
Schools can promote essential leadership skills that set students up to live successful, fulfilling lives. They do so by:
- Rewarding perseverance and hard work
- Encouraging and rewarding active listening
- Getting students acquainted with the concept of leadership service
- Rewarding and valuing honesty
- Promoting communication and decision-making on multiple levels
- Encouraging students to think positively and take responsibility
Having a raw talent for leadership doesn’t automatically make someone a good leader. Business coaching professionals know that those with natural charisma and appeal aren’t always positive sources of leadership. People can learn to be good leaders practicing, shaping, and molding their leadership abilities as they go. This learning process is what business coaching has set out to facilitate and guide.