Are you a natural leader?


By Barbara Russo

“Leaders are born not made,” or so the oft-quoted adage of dubious origin goes. While there is much to support this concept, I offer you a more expansive point of view. Think: “Field of Dreams.” It’s true, “if you build it they will come.”

While certain leadership traits such as courage and tenacity may be innate, there are many others that can be nurtured, developed and made operational. What it takes is identifying your personal leadership style and making the choice to be the leader you want to be. Here’s Shakespeare again, “to be or not to be,” that is the question.

We are called human beings, not human doings. “Being” is the operative word and action.  Ask yourself:


How do you want to be as a leader?Alternate Text

What skills and abilities do you have?

Of these, which might you want to enhance?

What other skills might you want to incorporate?

How do you perceive yourself as a leader?

How do you want to be perceived?

What does being a leader mean to you?

These are just a few questions to begin the process of uncovering and identifying your personal leadership quotient.

As you begin to answer these questions how you define “leader” will become clearer and more meaningful. The clearer you can see this target, the more confidently you can move toward hitting the bull’s eye and become the leader you want to be. You get to make the choice.  You get to define yourself on your own terms.

Barbara Russo is an executive and life coach who specializes in organizational growth and transitions. Learn more at



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About The Author

Barbara is an Executive/Organizational/Life Coach, trained and certified through New York University’s School of Continuing Professional Studies, and serves as an adjunct faculty member in the NYU-SCPS Coaching Program and The Berkeley Extension, Business and Management Department. Barbara is certified through the International Coach Federation and holds additional certifications, including SDI - Strength Development Inventory and Power Coaching. As a facilitator, moderator, workshop and teleconference leader, coach, coach-trainer and presenter, Barbara’s focus is career transition and leadership development. A former executive vice president of a national, New York-based personnel staffing firm and entrepreneur, Barbara combines the synergy of these roles and the breadth of her professional and personal experience to support and facilitate executives, career professionals, entrepreneurs, individuals, teams and organizations across the country through successful strategic transition and growth. Barbara serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations enjoys living life and does so in both New York City and the San Francisco Bay area.

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