Do you have what it takes to be a leader? I'm not talking about being a boss. I'm not alking about having a few initials after your name. I'm not even talking about having
a title on a business card. I'm talking about leading a
group of people. Do YOU have what it takes?
The dictionary defines a leader as a person who
has commanding authority or influence. I believe lead-
ership author and speaker Warren Bennis describes it
even better, "Create a compelling vision, one that takes
people to a new place, and then translate that vision
into a reality.”
When I started working for a small bank as a
part-time teller in the late 90's, I had no idea I would
lead others along the chaotic road of the mortgage
industry. I had other leaders who believed in me and
my abilities, even when I doubted myself. These lead-
ers had a vision they turned into a reality. Their vision,
thankfully, included me.
So, do you have what it takes?
Do you have dedication? A good leader possesses
the dedication and drive to ensure she performs at a
high level. This type of dedication cannot be taught. It
is a fire that dwells within. In my own experi-
ence, there have been periods of working 12 or more
hours per day. I worked those hours knowing the hard
work would pay off. It did.
• Can you make the sacrifice? How many of you have
worked on your day off? A great leader will sacrifice a
day off to answer a call or to respond to an email or
to spend much of the day helping a co-worker struggling with an issue. A leader knows there will be times
he or she will need to go to great lengths to get the
job done. At times, family will become second place.
When I first started in the mortgage industry, my
children were sometimes placed on the back burner.
As a newly single mother with two small children to
provide for, I knew making the sacrifice would provide
a good living for us later. This sort of sacrifice is worth
it if it is on a short-term basis.
• Do you possess humility? A job is never truly done
by only one person. It takes a team to complete the
job well. A leader knows it is the team that truly does
the work; the hard work is accomplished as a result of
her leading the team to make the vision a reality. She
knows that without the entire team, the job would
By Kimberly Dewberry