Learning to Lead

Is a leader born or made? I believe the debate will always remain a topic of conversation. Instead of debating the theory, I decided to test it.  I recently had the opportunity to attend a two-day leadership course that focused on developing one’s personal leadership skills through a series of self-evaluation tests and personal reflection tools.

Among the key learnings I was able to take away from the course, three main points stood out as items to reflect upon and to grow and develop.

I am an ESTJ. What is an ESTJ you ask? Well, that is my leadership type indicator code – it also stands for Extraversion, Sensing, Thinking and Judging. Results from an online test measured which leadership attributes I exude more often than other traits, which provided me with a type indicator – ESTJ. Through this evaluation, I learned not only key leadership traits about myself, but also how I can utilize my characteristics to better work with others that fall into a different type indicator.

Another key learning I took away from the course was how to take the time to reflect. I found I was spending a lot of time reflecting on a negative experience – what had gone wrong and how to strategically fix it. Great leaders take the time to understand a situation, good or bad, and consider how to improve it and what to learn from it. I’ve started the practice of reflecting on a daily basis and have found it provides me with the ability to feel greater confidence in my decisions as I’ve taken the appropriate time to consider them.

The final key learning that I was particularly intrigued by is that great leaders take the time to road map their future – they don’t leave it to fate to decide what will happen in life. I learned that road mapping can be done in many formats, whatever resonates with the person creating the road map. Our instructor had us road map what was important to us through a creative drawing in the form of a coat-of-arms, a symbolic representation of what we value, how we would like to be seen and what leadership direction we would like to go.

Okay, don’t laugh, it’s been a while since I’ve broken out the pencil crayons!



-Leanna Kruk is a Senior Account Executive at Brookline Public Relations. A native Torontonian, she started her public relations career in agency where she has managed clients in various industries, offering them a wide-range of public relations services. She is passionate about public relations and uses her experience to deliver solid results for clients.

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