I was having dinner a few years ago with a friend doing his PhD in organizational leadership and we had a fascinating conversation.
For his thesis, he went back in time over the past 100 years looking at the most respected authors and lecturers on leadership and discovered the 5 character traits that were the most commonly listed.
Today I’ll share one of them.
1 Powerful Common Trait of Successful Leaders
4 out of 5 of them, I was mostly in agreement with. This one, though, I had some initial reservations with until I thought a little deeper.
Great leaders over the past 100 years have been highly intelligent.
Kind of depressing to think about that if you don’t feel like you were born with a naturally high IQ.
I’ve always been of the belief that leaders are created (not born) and that you don’t need any natural talents above and beyond what everyone else was born with. So I argued with him for a bit until we came to a mutual agreement…
Intelligence doesn’t have to be an inborn talent. Intelligence is learned.
For this to make more sense, let me share with you the definition of intelligence:
~The capacity to learn.
Intelligence is your ability to acquire and apply knowledge and skills.
Your capacity to learn is based on how much you exercise your learning muscles.
Just like strength could be considered your capacity to lift heavy weights. Obviously the more weights you lift, you grow your muscles to have the capacity to lift more.
And the more you learn, you grow your mind to have the capacity to learn more.
Sure, there may be some people who were born with a higher disposition to learn, just like there are some people with a higher capacity for strength. But the reason why idiots are idiots, is because they refuse to work their learning muscles.
The reason why I consider myself to be highly intelligent has NOTHING to do with what I was born with. I’m intelligent because, for 20 years, I’ve been a ravenous learner. I’ve read about 1,000 books, attend at least 6-8 live seminars every year, and buy any course that can move me and/or my business forward.
I didn’t feel super intelligent growing up. Never got the best grades at all. In high school, I finished in the half of the class that made the top half possible.
But because I’ve worked my intelligence muscle incredibly hard for a very long time, it’s allowed me to grow it to the point where I have an insane level of confidence in my intelligence today.
So, my friend, know this…
Intelligence is a choice. So is ignorance.
Which do you choose?
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You may also READ our blog post about “Most Important Leadership Question in Network Marketing”.
P.S. – If you chose intelligence above, that only works by backing up your choice by doing the “mental work” to increase your capacity. Reading a good book is a great option for that… and, wouldn’t ya know it, I have a book you can read! 😉 If you haven’t read it, hop over to www.7StrategiesBook.com and get it. It’s in PDF format so you can download it immediately. And since it’s only 63 pages, you can probably read most of it tonight. (And if you’ve already read it, hop over to Amazon and pick something else up!)
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