3 Unmistakable Indicators You’re Growing as a Leader

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Updated from February 1, 2013 post

Can you actually measure the effectiveness of your leadership development?


In fact, measuring your progress is not only possible, it’s imperative.

Imagine if you could somehow really tell if all the leadership books you are reading and the seminars you are attending are paying off.

Without a reliable set of indicators to gauge the impact of your development plan you could be spinning your wheels. On the other hand, when you can recognize the indicators of progress it can give you tremendous personal momentum.

So, how do you do it? How do you know if you are actually growing as a leader?

The key is to look for these unmistakable leadership development indicators:

1.   You are attracting higher capacity leaders into your orbit

John Maxwell has rightly pointed out that if you are a “6” or a “7” as a leader, you will never attract “8’s” and “9’s”. You will only be able to lead “4’s” and “5’s”.

But if you are actually growing as a leader, one of the first indicators will be that those high capacity leaders will begin to be drawn to you.

2.   Your opinion is not only being heard, it is being sought out

Watch what happens around a discussion table when it’s time for a key decision to be made.

Long before there’s a show of hands, long before the vote is taken, the discussion leader will say something like, “So, what do the rest of you think?”

At that moment, watch which way everyone’s head turns.

If you are growing in your leadership, then increasingly those heads will turn towards you.

3.   There are increasing numbers of leaders in your circle

This is not a function of leadership attraction, as much as it is a function of leadership production.

Because, growing leaders produce growing leaders.

If you are indeed growing in your leadership then you should see evidence of a growing number of leaders emerging whom you are building into.

So, over time, watch for these unmistakable indicators to become increasingly evident in your life.

They’ll be signaling that your leadership development efforts are paying off.

How else can you tell if you are growing as a leader? 


the author

Scott Cochrane

Vice President- International, Global Leadership Network. Love Jesus, Nora, Adam & Robin, Amy, Dave, Willow & Olive and John, Fiona & Will. Lifelong learner.


  1. Excellent thoughts. I wonder what your thoughts are on how long it should take to move from a 4 to a 6 to an 8. I imagine it takes longer (and more work) the farther up the scale you go.

  2. Thanks for weighing in Dayton and Matt.

    Matt, the question of how long such growth takes is a very interesting one. In my own life and leadership there have been seasons when it seemed that I experienced leadership growth “spurts”; very rapid increases in leadership effectiveness. At other times such growth has been painfully slow.

    It seems that most often, when growth has been rapid, it has been coming through a time of pressure.

    Have you ever noticed that we seem to grow the most when the pressure is on? One of life’s cruel ironies!

  3. Dear Scott

    It was great your article YOU HAVE REITERATED A BRUTAL FACT ” GREAT LEADERS DON’T CREATE GREAT FOLLOWERS THEY CREATE MORE GREAT LEADERS “.This is the real quantifying measurement of the leadership .

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