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Key Traits Of Pivotal Leadership

Do you know what makes a great leader? Why are some people more successful than others when it comes to leadership? A lot has been written on this topic, but what does it mean for you? How do you know if you have what it takes to be someone people want to follow? Here are a few key traits of a pivotal leader.

What is Pivotal Leadership?

Pivotal leadership is defined as a leader who takes the initiative and demonstrates the courage and fortitude to make things happen. They seek opportunities and are willing to make changes and decisions that will positively impact others. 

For instance, leading your company's revenue-generating efforts comes with its own set of challenges and responsibilities. It can be described as feeling the weight of the world on your shoulders. There is a lot of pressure that comes with sales leadership. When looking specifically at success in sales leadership, pivotal leadership is what you need.

Pivotal Leadership Skills

It may seem like people are gifted with these skills, but the truth is most leadership traits can be learned and refined with time and practice. John Maxwell provides greater depth into this with his book Developing the Leader Within You and his 5 Levels of Leadership.

Three key traits pivotal leaders possess are influential, learner, and perseverance.

Influential - Driven with Purpose

Driving purpose in your organization involves helping people know why you need them to do something. If they don't see the purpose or are left to determine purpose on their own, they will be less engaged. The resolution is to illustrate the vision and how they are a part of it. When possible, include them in creating the vision. If that is not feasible, paint a picture for them that they can truly see and understand.

Being influential means that you have the capacity to have an effect on someone's character, development, or behavior. With this comes responsibility. Having a shared sense of purpose allows people to create synergy organically.

The purpose is what drives you forward – both personally and professionally. This purpose defines the quality of leadership that impacts a company's cultureStrategic planning helps your organization define your company culture and the purpose for your sales teams.

Learner - Always Improving

Another key trait of a pivotal leader is learning and improvement. Whether it's yourself or your team, are you always looking for ways to improve? Life-long learners make some of the best leaders. They understand that to improve, you need to learn and discover new things. Wisdom comes with the experience of implementing these learnings. What sets great leaders apart is knowing when to learn and when to implement.

A few ways sales leaders improve are:

  • Reading from credible sources
  • Working with a mentor
  • Peer groups

Sales leadership development – Pivotal Peak Alliance Leaders also look for ways to improve their team and create a legacy of leaders such as:

  • Customized tools
  • Team training
  • Individualized one-on-one coaching

There are many ways to improve yourself and your team.

Perseverance - Keep On Keeping On

Perseverance is another trait of a pivotal leader. Perseverance is the commitment to following through a course of action, especially despite difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement. In business, as in life, there are trying times. However, leaders who persevere and can bring their team along, see success on the other side of the obstacle.

Sometimes you may be unable to complete a task or get what you want when things do not go your way. However, by persevering, you can be successful. Those who lack the necessary stamina can develop perseverance from within.

Perseverance is a steady continuation in the course of action despite difficulties or discouragement from others. Like Theodore Roosevelt is known to say, "nothing worth having comes easy." A leader does not easily give in when confronted with an obstacle while moving towards a goal. They will need to show a range of skills to deal with the situation, and perseverance will get them to a better place.

Perseverance comes from failing and getting up again. Without failure, you cannot become successful. Failure, when seen as a lesson rather than a setback and changing your attitude toward it, can have an extraordinary impact on your life and lead you to be a better leader.

When you do fail, it's nice to have a network of support that includes family, friends, co-workers, and peers. They will allow you to have a comfortable place to open up and get feedback and encouragement during challenging times. Then, whenever something goes wrong, you can turn to your network of support.

In The End

These key traits are the foundation of good leadership. While some of these leadership qualities may be more naturally present in the personality of a leader, it is something you can intentionally develop and strengthen over time.

About Elizabeth Gese

Elizabeth is an Owner, and VP of Business Operations at Pivotal Advisors. She has over 18 years of leadership experience in sales, marketing, and procurement. Through many fluctuating changes in the market, Elizabeth kept her teams focused, positive, and united during these disruptive transitions while continuing to deliver reliable results. If you want to find out more about Elizabeth check out her profile here.
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