One of the biggest factors in a company’s success is also one of the hardest to acquire.

According to a recent leadership survey, 46 percent of companies stated that leadership skills were the most difficult to find in an employee.

So, what does this mean for businesses?

The shortage in leadership abilities is enhancing the need for employee development programs to cultivate the growth and innovation that companies are looking for.

This post will examine some of the key characteristics of exceptional leaders and explore some of the methods available to enhance these skills in your workforce.


  1. The Communication Hurdle

The ability to communicate effectively is arguably the most important quality for influential leadership.

A workforce that is comprised of a diverse group of employees can be enormously advantageous but it can also create gaps in communication. This makes it even more critical for company leaders to develop their abilities in this area.

It’s often much easier to discuss the importance of communication than to apply it in a work setting. For this reason, it may be helpful to utilize the help of professionals and take advantage of team building seminars and leadership development programs.

Strong communication is at the core of great teamwork and goal completion.


  1. The Creative Key

The capacity to effectively lead a team is dependent on a variety of qualities – including creativity.

Solving complex problems and promoting the unique talents of your team becomes much more feasible when you add creativity to the equation. This collaboration and strategic influence often distinguishes a great leader from an average manager.

When you are able to tap into your creativity, and encourage your employees to explore their own, a dream can quickly become a reality. The bottom line of your business is directly tied to the creative abilities of your employees.


  1. The Shift to Embrace Chance

Are you able to deal with change in a positive way?

The best leaders not only accept change but embrace it.

Change can often be stressful in the workplace, but it is also unavoidable. Great leaders understand how to diffuse the negativity that can erupt around it and redirect their team members in a productive direction.

They also know that change keeps people from becoming too complacent and encourages creativity and optimized processes.  Great companies are supported by strong teams and guided by exceptional leaders.

While 68 percent of U.S. workers identify as leaders in a recent survey, less than half of HR professionals believed that there was an adequate pool of talent to fill their leadership roles.

As you shift your focus to cultivate leadership development and team building initiatives, you’ll begin to reap the benefits of your employee’s potential. This may seem like a massive challenge, but there are a large number of methods and resources available to help you execute this strategy. Businesses of every size and type have the ability to eliminate barriers to success by encouraging employees develop their skills and work together to bring your business goals to fruition.

Dr. Steven J. Stowell is the Founder and President of Center for Management and Organization Effectiveness, Inc. (CMOE). CMOE was founded in 1978 to help individuals and teams maximize their effectiveness and create strategic competitiveness. Steve’s special interests lie in helping develop leaders, strategy creation and execution skills, building teamwork, resolving conflict, creating effective relationships, and transforming organizations into high-performance cultures.