Follow the leader

In a competency-based interview or application form, when you tell a story about how you lead, it is vital that you also show how others followed, writes John Moloney, Career Coach, Sli Nua Careers.

Leaders without followers are not leaders.

What I am getting at here is that you should not underestimate the importance of demonstrating how the actions you took in terms of being a leader – be it in the workplace, the sports field or the community – moved others to follow or.

Candidates all too often omit to include the result of what accrued from their actions.  The merit of the story lies in those outcomes.

So, as a teacher, for example, you may wish to tell the story of how you developed leadership capacity in others by training one of your colleagues to take on the responsibility for the school musical. You had run the musical for, say, the previous five years and you wished to pass it onto someone else.

For the story to have value, the teacher who took over the running of the musical, must, in reality, have succeeded in staging a good musical. Without that, there is no proof that your leadership had the desired effect.

For the leadership story to have impact, there must be clear evidence of followers, and those followers must achieve things.

John Moloney is a Career Coach with Sli Nua Careers.

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