Why Do You Want to Be a Team Leader? 5 Best Answers

One of the most common interview questions is, “why do you want to be a team leader?” there is a hundred percent chance of an interviewer asking this question. This blog post will discuss 5 sample answers to this question. We will also provide tips on how to make your answer stand out.

Why Do You Want to Be a Team Leader Best Answers

Leadership is a critical component of any organization, but it can be especially challenging in fast-paced and high-stress environments. Team leaders need to be able to motivate their team members, make decisions under pressure, and handle difficult situations. If you are interested in becoming a team leader, it is important to be able to articulate why you want the position.

Why Do You Want to Be a Team Leader Best Answers

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Why do employers ask, “Why do you want to be a team leader?”

The answer to this question will give the employer an idea of your motivation for wanting the position. They want to know if you are looking for a leadership role because you are genuinely interested in leading a team or if you are simply looking for a title.

Tips to Answer “Why do you want to be a team leader?”

When preparing your answer to this question, it is important to remember that your goal is to stand out from the other candidates. Here are a few tips to help you do just that:

  • Be specific about your previous leadership experience and how it has prepared you for the role of team leader.
  • Discuss your passion for helping others grow and develop in their careers.
  • Explain how being a team leader would allow you to make a difference in your company.
  • Share why you feel ready and prepared to take on the challenge of leading a team.
  • Discuss your interest in leadership and your ability to motivate and inspire others.
  • Read the job description carefully and use specific examples to illustrate why you would be the perfect candidate for the role.

By following these tips, you can be sure that your answer to “why do you want to be a team leader?” will make you stand out from the other candidates.

Sample answers to the question “why do you want to be a team leader?”

Sample answer 1.

“I want to be a team leader because I have a passion for helping others succeed. In my previous role as an account manager, I often helped new hires learn the ropes and get acclimated to our company culture. I enjoyed being able to help them grow in their career and reach their full potential. As a team leader, I would be able to help even more people succeed. I would also be able to share my knowledge and experience with other team members, which would help our team be more successful.”

Sample Answer 2

“I’ve always been drawn to positions of leadership. Even in high school, I was elected student body president. I enjoy being able to motivate and inspire others to achieve their goals. As a team leader, I would be able to use my previous experiences to guide and support my team members. I would also be able to continue developing my leadership skills. Additionally, being a team leader would allow me to impact our company’s success positively.”

Sample Answer 3

“I want to be a team leader because it is a natural progression in my career. I have been with our company for five years and have held several positions of increasing responsibility. In my current role as a project manager, I often find myself taking on leadership roles when other team members are unavailable. I know that I have the skills and experience to be an effective leader, and I am ready to take on this challenge.”

Sample Answer 4

“I want to be a team leader because it is an opportunity to make a difference in our company. I have been working in the marketing department for three years, and I have seen firsthand how important strong leadership is to our success. As a team leader, I would be able to use my knowledge and experience to help our team achieve its goals. Additionally, being a team leader would allow me to impact our company’s bottom line positively.”

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Final thoughts

There are a number of reasons why you may want to be a team leader. Whatever your reason, it’s important to be able to articulate it in a way that is convincing and relatable. The above sample answers should give you some ideas on doing this. Remember, your response should be specific to you and your experiences.

Thank you for reading! I hope this was helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to comment below. Thanks again! 🙂

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Random Acts Of Leadership ™

Why Do You Want To Be A Leader?

Have you taken the time to get clear for yourself why you want to be a leader? Or, are you waiting to get to a particular level? Or, actually have people reporting to you before that question seems relevant? Consider that:

“Why do you want to lead?” is a question you should be asking yourself early and often in your career.

Of course, I’m making an assumption that you are reading this article because you already are or know you want to become a leader. However, attaining a position of leadership does not by default imply a desire to be a leader.

Having worked for my first 15 years out of college as a corporate employee, the term leader was usually used based on someone’s position rather than their skills as a leader. For many, the desire to become a leader is more about getting a promotion than a commitment and interest in leading others. After all, promotions are a common way to reward people for doing good work, regardless of whether that good work involves leading others. And having people report to you, i.e., people you are expected to lead, comes along with the territory as you travel up the ladder to success.

Through the years, however, both as an employee and a consultant, I’ve met many people who did not actually want to lead other people. However, they were promoted to a leadership position simply as a reward for their knowledge and expertise in their field. I’ve also encountered others who wanted to become a better leader so they could be considered for that next promotion, not because they truly wanted to lead others.

So it isn’t surprising when I encounter someone in a leadership position who hasn’t really given much thought to why they want to be a leader. Many haven’t even been asked the question. That is because a focus on leadership development often does not begin in many companies until someone is in a high enough position to be declared a leader by default.

Three Reasons Why Knowing Why You Want To Lead Matters

Meeting for to be a leader

1. Your “Why” is the Foundation for Building Trust with Others

While this may seem counter-intuitive, the answer to why you want to lead isn’t about you. It’s about the impact you will have on others. Getting clear about the difference you want to make for others — both the people you lead directly, as well as the difference you want to make where you work and live — helps you to communicate what people can count on from you. This an important foundation for earning the trust of others.

2. Your “Why” Serves as a Source of Inspiration to Become the Best Version of You

Like it or not, once you are declared a leader by virtue of position, people are watching. You can choose who you want to become in the face of being watched more closely, as well as how you will be perceived. Or, you can let circumstances and your reaction to them drive your performance as a leader and the perception of others. Clarifying why you want to be a leader is the start to leading by design and intention.

3. People are Counting on You to Lead Them

Whether you ended up in a position of leading others being clear about why you want to lead or not, people are counting on you to lead them both by example and as a champion for them and the impact you will make together. They may not have been able to choose whether they report to you, but they do have a choice regarding whether they will follow your lead. The ability to convey why you are leading others is important if you want influence others to follow you by choice rather than because you are the boss.

As you grow, the answer to “Why do you want to be a leader?” might actually evolve and change. So if you haven’t taken the time to answer this question recently (or ever), now is a great time to think about your why!

“Why Do You Want To Be A Leader?” – 3 Additional Questions

Dice of 3 to be a leader

  • What difference do you want to make for those you lead?
  • What do you most want to be known for by others?
  • What impact do you want to make on results and/or the environment you work in?

So whether you already know why you want to be a leader or not, now is a great time to think about your why, for both you and the people who are or will be counting on you to lead them.

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My “why” as related to my work is: “To be a champion for excellent systems engineering for everyone interested in the discipline, so that we can successfully respond to our increasingly complex world.” If I wanted to simplify, or not make it so work related – I’d just say “To be a champion for excellence.” In my mind, that means encouraging others to always strive to keep learning, growing and improving, to be the best they can be; and leading by example, doing those same things myself.

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Thanks for sharing your why with us Lori!

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My why is because I have found myself truly in holistically by committing to the service of others. It really helps in assessing the needs of the community and builds your emotional intelligence.

Wonderful Dennis! I would love to hear more about what you specifically do in service to others so I invite you to share more here.

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Leadership Essay

27 August, 2020

12 minutes read

Author:  Richard Pircher

As a college student, you must write essays on a regular basis since the latter is one of the most common types of home assignments. All this means is that in order to get good grades and be successful with writing the papers, you need to have a sound understanding of the structure. Additionally, what you should never neglect is the variety of essay types. Indeed, your essay will significantly differ from one type to another: description essay will most likely have a structure that is slightly different from an argumentative one.

Leadership Essays

What you may have already encountered in your academic life is the work on a leadership essay. Although it sounds pretty complicated and vague, it is mostly possible to master an essay on leadership. Below is a guide for you to get an insight into this particular essay type.

What is a good leadership essay?

A good leadership essay is the one in which the essay writer has fully covered the topic of leadership and understood its core ideas. More specifically, to end up with a flawless leadership essay, you will need to indicate what makes a person a good leader. For achieving the latter, you will most likely need to conduct research and trace how a particular person reaches his or her goals. In other words, the task is to discover which actions the person undertakes, what their followers say about him or her, and how the person organizes the work. So, a leadership essay implies providing real-life success examples and further revealing them.

Above all, a good leadership essay is the one that follows a precise, clear, comprehensive structure. Structuring your essay about leadership in the most coherent way leads to a win-win situation: you have fewer troubles and barriers to writing a brilliant essay, and your teacher is able to comprehend the essay easily. This guide is what you will need to refer to to get an insight into how the flawless structure for a leadership essay looks like and how it will let you take a benefit.

How to write a Leadership essay?

To write a leadership essay that stands out, you first need to brainstorm all the ideas that you have and come up with a topic for your essay. If you are struggling with this step, you may think of some of the most influential people, read about them, and find out what makes them unique. Or, you can pick any topic which is mentioned at the end of this article. After you have chosen an issue, it is time to structure your essay appropriately.

how to write a leadership essay example

As you already know, an essay constitutes three essential sections: introduction, main body, and conclusion. Below is the more detailed description of each of the parts.


Of course, your leadership essay introduction will always vary depending on the topic of the essay. However, you can always begin by stating your vision of leadership regardless of the topic. Additionally, to motivate the reader and instantly catch his or her attention, you may use a quote of a famous leader, or simply a quote which you find relevant to the topic. Be aware that you should avoid outlining the essence and the role of the leadership in your introduction; leave it for the body paragraphs.

What you may also do in your leadership essay is ask a question, which will most likely intrigue the leader. Or it will at least give your reader an overview of what you will dwell on  in your essay.

Body Paragraphs

You will need to divide the main body into 3-5 paragraphs to make the structure more comprehensive. What you have to do at this point  is  give your reader a sound understanding of your ideas. Therefore, try to fit each idea in a single body paragraph so that you do not confuse your reader. Do not hesitate to indicate your examples to strengthen your arguments. For instance, you may explain a fact that makes a particular person you are writing about a real leader.

Also, always stick to your thesis statement and don’t forget that the body paragraphs should reveal the parts of your thesis statement.

As you may already know, you need to restate your opinion and briefly summarize all the points from the main body in conclusion. For instance, if you wrote your essay on qualities of an effective leader, state the most fundamental qualities and indicate why they matter the most. Besides, try not to copy what you have already written in the body – it is better to restate your opinion using different words. And, of course, beware adding any new and extra information; indicate only those points that you have already outlined in the text. Finally, keep in mind that it is always favorable to keep your concluding remarks short.

leadership essay

Leadership Essay Examples

Writing a leadership essay requires some research and time. In case you feel the necessity to go through an essay example, below is a leadership essay sample you can refer to.

Is leadership an inborn or an acquired feature?

Is everyone capable of becoming a leader, or is this ability innate? A lot of researchers have been struggling to answer this question. One assumption about leadership implies that the leader is the person who possesses particular characteristics. Another assumption claims that leaders are capable of acquiring specific features over their life span. As the evidence shows, leaders own many features that distinguish them among others and make more and more people become their followers. These might be cognitive abilities, psychological traits, professional qualities, and a lot more, and all of them will be either acquired or innate. Based on the importance of leadership qualities, such as commitment, stress resistance, and the ability to make quality decisions, it is reasonable to claim that leaders are made, not born. 

One can deem commitment as one of the top fundamental qualities of the leader. In essence, such a feature indicates that a person is passionate about the common goal, strives to be a team player, and makes every effort to reach a shared goal. As the history shows, none of the successful companies was uncoordinated by an influential, committed leader: Apple, Amazon, Microsoft – all of these companies are examples of dominant teams led by a dedicated leader. A committed leader also inspires his or her team to achieve common goals and put more effort into the shared activity. Besides, commitment is unlikely to be an innate feature; it instead comes with experience. This is so, since commitment implies dedicating oneself to the shared task, and one can reach it only via learning and continuous self-improvement.

Stress resistance is another incredibly important feature that every good leader should possess. This is because only a stress-resistant leader has sufficient capabilities to overcome any complexity and not let the anxiety and stress prevent him or her from making proper decisions. Besides, such a leader will most likely have a positive influence on the team, as long as leading by example will motivate the team members to attain the same emotional stability. What is so far familiar about stress resistance as an effective leader’s feature is that it can be either innate or attained. However, although some researchers admit that emotional stability is something one is born with, it is not entirely true; many people still put a great effort into self-improvement, changing the attitude to unfortunate situations, and so on. Therefore, being resistant to stress can be mostly attributed to a personality.

An ability to make high-quality decisions most likely determines the chances for an enterprise’s success. In particular, such quality is incredibly fundamental for a company of any size and professional orientation. Additionally, it is one of the top tasks of a good leader to make final decisions. What he or she should do implies brainstorming, discussing various opinions in the group, making forecasts, analyzing all the pros and cons. However, the leader is the one to make a final decision. Thereby, he is in charge of researching the market, discovering all the hidden truths, and analyzing the organization’s potential and capabilities to result in the most effective decision. As it flows logically from the latter, an ability to make sound quality decisions is purely a professional quality. This leads to the conclusion that one has to work hard to become a genuine leader and master the skill of making effective decisions. 

Overall, the leader may possess a multitude of different skills and master them perfectly. However, what has so far become transparent is that any leader, regardless of which team he leads, must possess three essential qualities. These qualities are commitment to the common goal, ability to handle and resist stress, and, finally, an ability to make effective decisions. All of the three qualities are most likely to be acquired over a lifetime. The statement below leads to the conclusion that even though some qualities can be innate, most are not the ones that leaders are born with. Hence, this answers an essential question: leadership feature is acquired, and not necessarily inborn.  

20 leadership essay topics

When coming up with your next leadership essay topic, it is imperative to brainstorm ideas and think of what leadership might be related to. If you are struggling with a topic of the importance of leadership essay or any relevant type of essay, you may quickly take a look at some of the possible topics we prepared for you:

  • What are the main qualities of the leader?
  • Successful Time Management as a feature of an effective leader
  • The role that rhetoric plays in leadership
  • The most exceptional leader in the history of the 20-th century
  • The role of female leadership
  • What are the challenges of the leader of the 21-st century?
  • How college helps students develop leadership skills?
  • Qualities of the leader that motivate people to follow them 
  • Top things to avoid doing to become a team leader
  • Examples of effective and ineffective leadership in the history
  • Top techniques for developing leadership skills
  • The interconnection of creativity and leadership 
  • Is a university’s role fundamental in developing leadership skills?
  • Dictatorship as an anti-example of leadership
  • Liberal vs Authoritative leadership: which one works better?
  • The influence of the leader’s role model on the followers’ mindset
  • Main difficulties that the new leader may face in a new team
  • Leadership of today vs leadership of the past: what has changed?
  • Reasons why I want to become a member if the leadership program
  • The role of cognitive abilities for the leader 

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Why Do I Want to Be a Team Leader

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Published: Sep 5, 2023

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Personal growth and skill enhancement, impactful leadership and mentorship, facilitating team success and fulfillment.

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Interview for Executives

“why do you want to be a leader” master this interview question.

Potential management candidates are tested thoroughly during the interview process. If you have the ambition to become a senior executive, you need to lay out strong arguments for your interviewer. We’ll show you how you should confidently respond to the question, “Why do you want to be a leader?”

why do you want to become a leader essay

Are you ready for a leadership position?

Stop for a moment and think about it. A leadership position sounds promising, but it also comes with an increase in workload and great responsibility. Perhaps you already have some experience as a team leader ? If yes, then you already know that this position takes a lot more than just achieving success with your team.

You not only have to organize, coordinate and delegate but also motivate. Plus, you’re the number one contact person when problems arise. Are you really ready for a leadership position? Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you enjoy the organization of work processes?
  • Do you accept responsibilities for yourself and your employees?
  • Do you get along well with your colleagues and staff?
  • Are you a good decision maker?
  • Can you enforce company policies?
  • Is it easy for you to accept differing opinions?
  • Do you handle criticism well?
  • Are you able to resolve conflicts as they arise?
  • Can you calm your nerves, even in stressful situations?
  • Can you effectively select and manage teams?

Did you answer “yes” to the majority of questions? If so, you could be ready to take that step in leadership.

Do you have what it takes to be an executive?

Few people are born leaders but, luckily, leadership can be learned. Regardless, there are still important basic requirements you must already bring with you. Unlike your employees, whose competence lies in their expertise, you need specific social skills as an aspiring executive. Take a look at these qualities needed for success as an executive:

  • Respect & trust
  • Self-confidence & assertiveness
  • Authenticity
  • Communication skills
  • Ability to delegate
  • Empathy & Awareness
  • Stress management
  • Organizational skills
  • Conflict resolution
  • Commitment & motivation
  • Concentration
  • Fast decision maker

How to build your argument

There’s a lot of demand placed upon executives. These figures embody different roles – they are the bosses , organizers, motivators, and role models. And now back to the question, “Why do you want to be a leader?”

When the time comes, it is vital to structure your arguments and present them logically. Write down your leadership skills and list examples in which you demonstrated these skills successfully. Maybe if it wasn’t for your conflict resolution skills, the partnership with your new advertising agency would have failed at the last minute. Ideally, if you are applying for a management position, you have very likely already gained experience in staff management. Think back to your biggest people-related challenges.

Write down your successes and present the facts: “Over the last three months, I headed the “marketing innovation” project, comprising of nine members. I was not only responsible for the coordination of the project but also for the delegation of responsibilities. Through regular meetings and feedback sessions with staff, I managed to resolve problems and conflicts at an early stage to optimize individual processes. This way, I could bring the project to completion three weeks earlier than scheduled.” Have no doubt when it comes to your leadership potential!

Once you have your leadership successes documented based on concrete examples, you should address your personal motivation. What motivates you to be a leader? Have you realized your avid interest in staff development during your supervisor’s last sick leave? Do you have new ideas you’d like to implement or test out in a new role? Perhaps a new approach to foster employee motivation?

Make it clear that you are willing to take responsibility and indicate your desire to positively influence the corporate culture. If you explain your motivation authentically and provide compelling examples of how you have used your leadership skills successfully in the past, you’ll have no trouble confidently answering the question, “Why do you want to be a leader ?”

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  • How to Structure a Leadership Essay (Samples to Consider)

Leadership is a complex concept, but it’s essential for boosting your career. That’s why a leadership essay focuses on applying the theoretical models and concepts of successful management to real-life situations. 

If you don’t know where to start writing such a paper, please read on for professional tips!

What Is Leadership Essay?

A leadership essay is a paper that analyzes leadership concepts and their application to real-life situations that may involve everyday business management, crisis situations, and other scenarios. 

Every essay on leadership is about defining a concept. Then, it’s either comparing it to similar management tools or proving that it’s useful (or not).

While some students enjoy writing such papers, other learners hate them. The below samples will come in handy, no matter which group is yours.

What Does Leadership Mean to You? (Essay Sample)

It is one of the most popular topics for a leadership essay. If you need to write a paper like that, ask yourself:

  • Who is a good leader?  
  • What style do they use?  
  • What are the situations when they might switch styles?

You may take a more personal approach to such an essay if your professor allows you to. In the example below, you will see the academic approach to this topic. It analyzes three leadership styles to discover which one corresponds to the meaning of leadership if one thinks of it as guidance and support.


Why I Want to Participate in a Leadership Program (Essay Sample)

It’s another example of a popular topic. Such papers often have a meaning beyond the classroom since they may decide whether you plan to participate in a specific program. It’s critical to make them as effective and compelling as possible.

A personalized approach is the best when it comes to essays like this. In the example below, you will see the paper that relies on individual beliefs and a personal life story to explain why it’s so important for the specific student to participate in the chosen program.

How to Write a Leadership Essay

Like every other essay, this paper has an introduction, several body paragraphs, and a conclusion summarizing your thoughts. (1) The most important part of the introduction is the final sentence,  aka  a thesis statement. That’s where you state your claim to prove or develop in your leadership essay.

Each body paragraph should correspond to the purpose of your essay. To ensure you don’t stray from the aim you’ve established in the thesis statement, write the topic sentences for all your paragraphs in the outline . In simple words, write the first sentence of every paragraph to define its development in advance and see if you cover everything you need.

And now, to the conclusion:

Its most essential element is thesis restatement or the first sentence of that paragraph. It’s not just paraphrasing your thesis; it’s also considering the new information you’ve discovered while writing the essay.


Structure :

  • Introduction (End it with a thesis statement.)
  • Body paragraphs (Each one starts with a topic sentence.)
  • Conclusion (Start it with a thesis restatement.)

Understand the purpose of a leadership essay

When starting to write, think about why you’re creating this paper. Before you sit down and type the words, think about the ideas you want to convey and their meaning in your life:

Can this essay teach you to take responsibility? Or maybe will it help you understand how to be a leader in crisis situations? When you’ve answered the “why” question, begin outlining.

Build a strong thesis

Always start with your thesis statement. It will help incorporate your answer to that notorious “why” question into your essay. Once done, you can plan out the rest of the paper and start working on the body paragraphs as soon as you finish the introduction.

There’s another important tip —don’t rush into writing the conclusion before you finish everything else!

It might seem like a good idea to create a thesis statement and thesis restatement right off the bat. However, you’ll find yourself with more refreshing ideas after completing all the research and thinking necessary for the introduction and each body paragraph.

Decide on a structure; format accordingly

Even if your essay about leadership seems not so formal, and you can use personal pronouns, you still need a clear structure.

The best way to write any academic paper is to keep your introduction and conclusion as short as possible. (But no shorter than three sentences and four lines of text). 

Another important tip is to try making all your body paragraphs equal in length. That way, you’ll give the same attention to all the vital points of your essay.

Ready to Write Your Essay on Leadership Now?

Hopefully, this article has helped you understand the most critical elements of a leadership essay. 

Remember the structure, grammar, and appropriate academic style to create a top-level paper. Please don’t forget to answer the “why” question and remember  why  you’re writing. Then you’ll impress everyone with your results!


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8 Essential Qualities of Successful Leaders

  • Rebecca Knight

why do you want to become a leader essay

And how to cultivate them.

Becoming a great leader is a journey of continuous learning and growth. It’s a process — one that thrives on embracing challenges, seeking feedback, fostering connections, and cultivating understanding. In this article, the author outlines the eight most essential leadership qualities, according to Harvard Business School professor Linda Hill, one of the world’s top experts on leadership. Star leaders aren’t born with superhuman capabilities, Linda explains. Rather, they tend to have intentionally put themselves in situations where they have to learn, adapt, and grow — a crucible for developing the tenacity and fortitude to motivate and guide others.

Do you have what it takes to be a great leader ?

why do you want to become a leader essay

  • RK Rebecca Knight is a journalist who writes about all things related to the changing nature of careers and the workplace. Her essays and reported stories have been featured in The Boston Globe, Business Insider, The New York Times, BBC, and The Christian Science Monitor. She was shortlisted as a Reuters Institute Fellow at Oxford University in 2023. Earlier in her career, she spent a decade as an editor and reporter at the Financial Times in New York, London, and Boston.

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Feb 15, 2023

Essays on Leadership for Students | 200 - 500 Word Essays

Are you writing an essay about leadership? Check out these examples!

Leadership is often defined as "the action of inspiring others to act in concert to achieve a particular goal." It signifies the harmony in actions that lead to a common objective. A genuine leader not only exudes confidence but also paves the way for their followers towards triumph. Over the years, various leadership styles have been identified and discussed by psychologists.

 Qualities such as intelligence, adaptability, extroversion, innate self-awareness, and social competence often emerge as the hallmarks of impactful leaders. There's a consensus that these traits mold an individual into an effective leader. Interestingly, some theories suggest that extraordinary situations can thrust an ordinary individual into the spotlight, bestowing upon them the mantle of leadership. It's also believed that leadership isn't a static trait but an evolving journey. It underscores the belief that with dedication and the right resources, anyone can hone their leadership abilities.

 True leadership goes beyond merely advocating for a cause. It involves taking responsibility, igniting motivation in others, and differentiating oneself from just being a 'boss'. A leader's essence lies in their ability to inspire and propel people towards grand visions, whereas a manager typically focuses on oversight and operational aspects.

What Is a Leadership Essay?

A leadership essay falls under the category of student application essays and serves to provide student admissions officers with insight into your past leadership experiences. Despite appearing to be very specific, this type of essay acknowledges that the nature and perception of leadership can vary significantly depending on the individual and the context.

 If you find yourself in need of further insights or a unique angle for your leadership essay, consider exploring an expert essay-writing tool designed to assist students in crafting compelling narratives by analyzing vast data and generating fresh ideas within minutes. In this article, we'll also delve into various leadership essay examples to offer a clearer understanding of the genre and inspire your writing journey.

4 Examples of Leadership Essays

Qualities of a good leader, introduction.

Confidence is the most important attribute first of all. One of the most important qualities in a leader is confidence in one's own abilities. A lack of self-assurance is fatal to a person's leadership potential. If you want others to follow you, you need to exude self-assurance. It's imperative for a leader to have faith in his own judgment and actions. How can people want to follow him if he doesn't even know what he's doing?

Every effective leader knows that they need to be an inspiration to their followers. A leader needs to set an example for his team. In addition, he ought to inspire them whenever feasible. A leader must also maintain optimism in trying times.

What qualities a good leader must have?

Leadership is the ability to influence and guide individuals or groups toward a common goal. A leader must possess several qualities to be effective, including:

Communication skills: A leader must be able to communicate their vision and goals clearly and effectively, both verbally and in writing. This requires excellent listening skills, empathy, and the ability to adapt to different communication styles.

Emotional intelligence: A leader must be able to understand and manage their own emotions, as well as those of their team members. This includes being able to understand and respond to the emotions of others, and handling conflicts in a constructive manner.

Visionary: A leader must have a clear and inspiring vision of the future, and be able to articulate this vision in a way that motivates others to work towards it.

Strategic thinking: A leader must be able to think critically and creatively to identify and solve problems, make decisions, and develop plans and strategies to achieve their goals.

Flexibility: A leader must be able to adapt to changing circumstances and be open to new ideas and perspectives. This requires the ability to embrace change, be innovative, and continuously learn and grow.

Integrity: A leader must have strong ethics and values, and be willing to make difficult decisions that are consistent with their beliefs. This requires honesty, transparency, and accountability.

Decisiveness: A leader must be able to make tough decisions quickly, without undue hesitation or procrastination. This requires courage and the ability to take calculated risks.

Empowerment: A leader must be able to delegate responsibilities, give team members the resources they need to succeed, and foster a sense of ownership and accountability among their team.


These qualities are essential for effective leadership, and when combined with hard work, determination, and a commitment to excellence, can help leaders to achieve great things.

How one can be a Great Leader?

Leadership is the act of performing the duties of a leader. In the business world, for instance, it is essential to have someone in charge of a team to ensure everything runs well. Effective leadership is essential for any group that wants to maximize its prospects of success.

Leadership Comes from Experience

As we've shown, leadership can be innate in some cases but is more often learned through practice and exposure. Sometimes the best traits of a leader must be learned over a lengthy period of time, so that one can become a notable one, proving that leadership is not always about a person's innate qualities. Leaders should continuously be on the lookout for opportunities to grow their leadership skills.

Nobody can disagree that experience is a key component of leadership. Numerous examples exist to back up this claim, such as:

Instance 1:

Our school's head boy or girl has traditionally been an older student who has been around for a while and thus has a better grasp of the ins and outs of school politics.

Instance 2:

When there is a vacancy for a team leader, it is common practice for the employee who has consistently put in the most effort and attention to the office job to receive a higher number of votes than their coworkers. 

“The best teacher for a leader is evaluated experience.” - John C. Maxwell

How one can be a Great Leader/Skills to be a Great Leader?

Effective leadership is a skill that develops through time. Developing into a leader with all the qualities that are needed takes a lot of hard work and potential. Being a prominent leader calls for a wide variety of traits. Some of these characteristics are addressed in further detail below:

One should be a Good Communicator

To be an effective leader, one must be able to convey his thoughts clearly to his/her/its subordinates.

Should have Confidence

The individual should have faith in what he says and does.

Give Credit to other Team Members too

A leader not only needs to impose his viewpoints and opinions instead he must also hear to the suggestions of other members of the team and offer them credit if their concept is appropriate.

Good Bond with the Team

A leader's ability to command respect from his team members depends on his ability to develop and maintain positive relationships with them.

Leads with Responsibility

A leader needs to be completely committed to his position. It's important that he takes on responsibility so that he can effectively deal with the various challenges he will inevitably face.

Any group or organization needs a leader above all else. Leadership development takes time and effort. One needs to have lived through a lot to be an effective leader. It's not enough to simply have years of experience in the field; one must also have the traits that make one an effective leader. You can't be a great leader unless you possess certain traits.

What makes a Good Leader?

Trying one's hand as a leader appears easy when viewed through this lens. Is that so tough? Of course not; leading is difficult, and not everyone aspires to be a leader. The vast majority of us have settled into well-established careers where we report to superiors and make a living. Still, not everyone is content to go along with the crowd. They become leaders in whatever field they pursue. A leader is an example to followers and will prioritize the needs of those around them.

Some Unique Qualities of a Leader

Many individuals resort to their leaders to vent their frustrations, therefore it's important for them to be good listeners.

A leader ought to be completely forthright; they can't play favorites or give anyone preferential treatment. One of the most essential qualities of a strong leader is the ability to make decisions with integrity.

They need to be aware of the bigger picture and understand what makes an individual stand out or become a leader. It's their expertise in addition to other distinguishing traits. Their awareness of current events and the results of recent studies is essential. In many ways, this is helpful, and it's the leader's responsibility to stay current.

Since some might not understand them, they should utilize straightforward, easily comprehended language. Leaders need to be able to communicate effectively at all times. In reality, what sets them apart is their exceptional communication skills. Adolf Hitler was such a gifted orator that his followers believed every word he said.

No matter how you're feeling or what's going on in the world, if you listen to a leader, they may make you feel energized. Since leaders are in charge of inspiring confidence in their followers, they can't afford to be wary or unsure of themselves. People tend to blindly follow their leaders.

Whether you're a leader or a doctor, you should devote yourself completely to your chosen field. Everything we do is for the benefit of others; engineers, for example, spend much of their time designing and constructing buildings for other people. So, take pride in what you do, and if you possess the aforementioned traits, you are also a leader who doesn't have to rely on others to succeed. No matter what you do, aspiring to leadership positions will always benefit others.

What is Leadership in Management and what are the weaknesses and strengths of a Leader?

Simply said, leadership is acting as a supervisor or manager of a group. Different mental pictures pop up when we hear the word "leadership" used in conversation. One might think of a political leader, team leader, corporate leader, school leader, etc. Leaders facilitate order and efficiency in the workplace. Teamwork and success are fundamental to effective leadership. Leaders utilize their managerial abilities to establish courses and guide their teams to success.

Strengths and Weaknesses of Leadership

Able to express oneself more clearly

Growth of character.


Possession of teamwork skills.

Gain assurance in yourself.


Acting favorably toward one's teammates.

Having no faith in the leader.

Thinks they're better than everyone else, but act hypocritically.

Not living up to the promised standard.

Insufficient morals.

Leadership and Management

Management and leadership are inextricably linked to one another. Leadership and management are both vital to the efficient operation of an organization; but, they accomplish very different things in the process. Leadership is a necessary skill for anyone aspiring to be an effective manager. The terms management and leadership are synonymous with one another. In this manner, we are able to draw the conclusion that a manager who demonstrates the traits of a successful leader is, in fact, a manager who is effective.

Leadership in School

Leadership is essential in nearly every group, as we've seen above. That group includes one's educational institution. Every school needs an outstanding figure to serve as its head of school. Class monitor, assembly captain, cultural leader, etc. are all examples of leadership roles that can be taken on at school, but this raises the question of what makes a person a successful school leader.

Any student hoping to be chosen as a student body leader will need to demonstrate a wide range of competencies. He or she needs to be a consistent student who pays attention in class and does well in extracurricular activities. For the simple reason that no intelligent and hardworking kid would ever be considered for leadership. Student leaders are most often selected from among those who participate fully in all activities.

Leadership in Organization

Leadership in an organization, also known as organizational leadership, is the process of establishing long-term objectives that further the company's mission and help it reach its ultimate destination. This is a classic illustration of how Bill Gates often works with his team: they agree on a strategy, and Gates implements it. To the same extent, it is the responsibility of the leader in each given organization to determine what it is that the group is trying to accomplish.

Leadership in Politics

Leadership in politics, also known as political leadership, is the process of becoming actively involved in a political party in the role of a party leader. Knowledge of political processes, their outcomes, and the political agenda is central to the idea of political leadership.

An effective leader can be developed in anyone who has the determination and drives to do so. Both the strengths and the areas for improvement should be nurtured. Whether in the classroom, the workplace, or the political arena, leadership is always necessary. Therefore, one can exercise leadership anywhere they like inside their own organization.

What are the types of Leadership?

The ability to lead is a rare trait that not everyone possesses. The ability to do so is a gift, so count your blessings if you possess it. It's recommended that you hone it even more so that you can propel your career forward and serve as an example to people around you. However, it is crucial to grasp the various leadership styles before you go ahead and polish your skills.

Types of Leadership Styles

Democratic Leadership

In this style of management, subordinates are given a voice in decision-making. Although the subordinates' efforts are highlighted, the leader is ultimately held responsible for the group's actions. Many people find this type of leadership to be effective.

Transformational Leadership

Transformational leaders motivate and inspire others to adopt new behaviors and ways of thinking in order to improve their own performance and that of their teams and organizations. A transformational leader is someone who encourages their team to strive for greater things and works to boost morale and output.

Team Leadership

A good leader fully incorporates his team into the task at hand. Members of the team are motivated to reach their goals and advance in their careers thanks to the leadership of the group.

Strategic Leadership

It requires a chief executive who doesn't restrict himself to brainstorming sessions with his superiors. He contributes on every level of the team. He is well-liked for his ability to unite the need for fresh ideas with the necessity of grounding them in reality.

Autocratic Leadership

The leader in a command and control structure is the center of attention. The chief executive has absolute power in this setting. He decides things on his own, without polling his staff. He relays this information to his staff and stresses the importance of swift action. The buck stops with him, and he alone must answer for his actions. Not much room for negotiation exists. It's no secret that this method of leading has its detractors.

Visionary Leadership

This kind of leader appreciates the abilities and requirements of his team members. He describes his ideal outcome and the teamwork that will be necessary to attain it.

Coaching Leadership

Leaders who coach their teams do so regularly in an effort to raise output. He inspires his employees to do better and works to keep them motivated. This approach to leadership has been much praised.

Facilitative Leadership

With occasional guidance, a facilitative leader ensures that the process runs smoothly for his team. As a precaution in case his team is ineffective. If the team is highly effective, the leader will take a hands-off approach.

Cross-Cultural Leadership

The leadership of this type is necessary when interacting with people from various cultural backgrounds. Because of the wide variety of cultures represented in the workforce across the United States, many managers and executives hold cross-cultural positions.

Laissez-Faire Leadership

The members of the team are given responsibility in this style of management. They are free to choose how they spend their time at work, with minimal oversight from the boss. It's not a good way to lead, according to experts.

Transactional Leadership

An interactive approach is integral to this kind of leadership. When team members successfully implement their leader's ideas and choices, they are rewarded with immediate, material benefits.

Charismatic Leadership

In order to bring out the best in his followers, this kind of leader makes the effort to change their attitudes, values, and actions.

This article should dispel the notion that leadership qualities can't be further subdivided. It should also assist you in pinpointing your own personal brand of leadership so you can perfect it over time.

Final Words

In conclusion, leadership is a complex and multifaceted concept that involves various qualities and skills. Effective leaders possess traits such as integrity, vision, empathy, decisiveness, and the ability to inspire and motivate others. They are able to navigate challenges, make difficult decisions, and lead their team toward success. Leadership also involves continuous learning and self-improvement, as leaders must adapt to changing circumstances and remain relevant. Effective leadership can have a positive impact on both individuals and organizations, fostering growth and creating a culture of success.

You can use Jenni.ai to quickly compose an essay on leadership, or any other topic, of your choosing. It's a fantastic choice that promises convenience and relief. Create an essay on any topic in a matter of minutes with the help of our AI-powered program. Membership is immediately available upon your free registration here.

You can use Jenni.ai to quickly compose an essay on leadership, or any other topic, of your choosing. It's a fantastic choice that promises convenience and relief. Create an essay on any topic in a matter of minutes with the help of our AI-powered program. Sign up on Jenni.ai and get a free trial.

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What Makes A Good Leader: Essay Hints

Jessica Nita

Table of Contents

why do you want to become a leader essay

In this essay, you need to discuss the essential qualities needed for becoming an effective leader. In fact, different situations require different types of leadership styles, so it may be hard to choose the qualities that define good leaders admired by people from bad ones.

Besides, there are common misconceptions about their role. In this article, we will try to answer the question of “what makes a good leader essay” and give you some recommendations about the aspects you should focus on.

Essay structure and key points to cover

Wondering what the best way to approach an essay on leadership qualities is? Leadership essays can be written in the expository style and structured to include different subtopics:

  • Discussion of major leadership theories.
  • Personality traits defining great leaders.
  • Leadership styles and how they work.
  • Leadership principles and core values.
  • Examples of leaders in different spheres of society.
  • People you consider to be leaders in your life.
  • Leadership skills you have.

It’s important to demonstrate an original personal understanding of leadership concept and provide impressive illustrative examples taken from today’s real life or history. That’s the best thing to do when reviewing various leadership qualities.

What are the qualities of a good leader: essay ideas

When we take an in-depth look at history, we see countless leadership qualities that were adopted by both good and bad leaders. When writing what are the qualities of a good leader essay, you should focus on the characteristics and strengths of a leader, and how they help influence and motivate other people along with achieving own goals.

These are emotional and behavioral characteristics of well-known leaders that helped them succeed:

  • Vision – effective leaders have exciting ideas, they usually are forward-looking, and have excellent strategic planning skills.
  • Communication – communicating ideas clearly and concisely is essential to ensure teamwork towards the same goal.
  • Integrity – they are honest and can always tell the truth in any situation.
  • Confidence – they dare to take risks to achieve their goals and never give up.
  • Responsiveness – good leaders value their team, listen to people they lead, and quickly change their behavior to match different situations.
  • Determination – good leaders are passionate about what they do and can motivate people by demonstrating their own commitment.
  • Empathy is the most important skill which allows to create strong bonds of trust and build successful teams.

Tips on writing a winning essay on leadership

When working on what makes a good leader essay, students should follow certain basic steps.

  • Research relevant sources on the internet to get a better understanding of the concept, read a lot, and make notes of interesting ideas which can be used in your paper.
  • Brainstorm ideas to write about, formulate a strong thesis statement and create a detailed working outline. Organize information in a logical order.
  • Start writing a draft with an introduction. Engage readers with a hook – provocative question, anecdote, stunning fact, convincing statistics. Introduce a subject, providing relevant background information. End introductory paragraph with a specific thesis that sums up your ideas.
  • Devote separate body paragraphs to specific points supporting the main argument. Begin paragraphs with topic sentences, presenting key points, give detailed explanations, and provide additional evidence and examples. Include appropriate citations with proper referencing. Sum up and demonstrate how each paragraph contributes to the logical argument.
  • Create a convincing conclusion to wrap up the paper’s key points.
  • Revise the first draft , make improvements in content, logic, and sentence structure. Edit to improve word choice and clarity.
  • Proofread the final version – fix minor errors and typos. Create references list and check the formatting of the entire paper.

why do you want to become a leader essay

The use of a leadership essay sample

Still not sure that you can write a good leader essay that will impress your readers? Read biographies of famous people who played crucial roles in human history, created big successful businesses, managed large corporations to learn which qualities contributed to their success.

Besides, you may want to check out some good paper examples.

Find out how powerful papers on this topic are structured and what interesting points they cover. Use essay samples as templates or models to follow.

See this short sample paragraph which discusses one of the leadership qualities for inspiration.

Empathy, an ability to recognize other’s feelings and perspectives and understand other people’s needs is crucial in leadership. Being empathetic means you can step into another person’s world and this character trait is essential for success due to several reasons. It’s impossible to effectively lead people you don’t understand. You can effectively motivate and influence someone if you know their feelings. Empathy is one of the keys to successful leadership because it helps build relationships with people they lead and create an environment of open communication. Luckily, empathy is natural for humans and we can even learn to be more empathetic and demonstrate this ability to people around us.

No time to write your essay on leadership? We’ve got plenty of time here! Our writers strive to help you out. Click the button faster and get yourself a perfect essay with no struggle!

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Why is Servant Leadership Important?

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The concept of servant leadership has been around for a while but has received growing consideration over the last decade because of its positive individual and organizational outcomes.

According to a 2021 NCBI study , Servant Leadership: A Systematic Literature Review and Network Analysis, “the moral nature of leaders has started to be considered not only necessary for the good of society but also essential for sustainable organizational success.” 

Service before self is becoming the mantra of our time. And servant leadership has become a defining characteristic of organizations that are attractive to employees, successful in their industry, and impactful on society at large.

  • What is servant leadership?

Coined by Robert K. Greenleaf in his essay, The Servant as Leader, the term “servant leader” means one who focuses primarily on the well-being of their employees and the communities they’re part of. They are a servant first and foremost, always putting the needs of their team above their own. In contrast to traditional forms of top-down leadership, servant leadership is a philosophical approach, a set of behaviors and practices, that emphasizes the growth and humanity of the employees being served.

What sets the servant leader apart is that they put the well-being, growth, and success of those they lead and manage before their own personal ambitions. They see their success as measured by their employees’ successes, and thus have a greater incentive to lead by example and invest in the growth of their team. They weigh their responsibility to their team as greater than their responsibility to the company’s bottom line. 

A servant leader is someone who others genuinely want to follow.
  • Why is servant leadership important?

In today’s workforce climate, it’s imperative to adopt the practice of servant leadership if you want to be a successful leader or manager. Putting a strong emphasis on workplace culture, pay equity, and fair employment practices, employees today are done putting up with managers and leaders who don’t live out the values of their organization. 

According to the Pew Research Center , more than 40% of the workforce is already made up of Millenials and Gen Z — and this percentage will only continue to rise. 

These generations have made it clear that their top priority when choosing an employer is that the company cares about the overall well-being and development of its employees. According to Gallup , the primary characteristic that Millennial and Gen Z job candidates are looking for in an employer is that they “care about their employees’ well-being.” This differs from previous generations, whose primary concern is to work for an ethical organization, and instead demonstrates the importance of caring leadership in the future of our workforce. 

__________ Advance your career and purpose. Start a graduate degree at PLNU. __________

  • Servant leadership traits and skills

Arguably displaying the most intentional form of leadership, the servant leader sees their own long-term success defined by the success of those they lead. To lead this way requires humility and the ability to acknowledge when you’re wrong, and for most of modern history, admitting fault was unheard of among executive-level managers. That practice, however, has not aged well as more and more of those engaged in and entering the labor force want leadership that demonstrates humility . 

There are traits and skills to being a servant leader that must be learned and practiced continuously — even the most renowned leaders are not perfect. Despite your best intentions, you may sometimes fall short of these criteria.

Let’s use a common scenario in any work environment:

What would happen if your boss was unsatisfied with your team’s output?

  • How would you respond?
  • By taking full responsibility and protecting your team and co-workers, or throwing someone under the bus to your boss in order to avoid the blame?

You’ve probably been there before and know that these situations can arise quickly or without warning. Often, you don’t have much time to consider how you should act, and it’s easy to protect yourself without considering what would happen to others. That’s why it’s crucial to cultivate your beliefs into practice so that when the moment counts, you’ll be there for the people you work with, those you care about, and those who depend on you.

  • How to become a servant leader

Servant leadership is a practice. It’s a daily process of learning and unlearning fundamental habits you may have as a leader that contribute to your employees’ experience and your company’s growth. Becoming a servant leader often means going against any base instincts of self-protection and self-promotion, and instead, choosing to rise above those instincts in order to help those below you. It means lowering yourself so you can raise up the people who you are responsible for and ensure their success, growth, and positive well-being.

With intentional time and effort, servant leadership is something that can be learned. 

Though this is not a one-size-fits-all journey, there are three important qualities that all servant leaders must possess: 

Emotional Intelligence:

To become a leader who truly makes a difference, you must devote time to growing your emotional intelligence , the ability to acknowledge how you feel and respond instead of react. As millions of new graduates enter the workforce, it’s important for leaders to model this vital characteristic to their employees and future leaders.


Awareness of self and others is crucial to being a servant leader. In “How to Become a Better Leader,” published by the MIT Sloan Management Review, self-awareness was found to be the most important capability for leaders. When you’re self-aware, you can adjust your behavior to change how you’re perceived by your employees and how you make them feel. The bottom line: understanding yourself is key to cultivating who you will become. 


This is where the leader part of servant leadership comes into play. Larry C. Spears, CEO of the Larry C. Spears Center for Servant Leadership, argues that “the servant leader seeks to convince others, rather than coerce compliance. This particular element offers one of the clearest distinctions between the traditional authoritarian model and that of servant leadership.” 

The servant leader seeks to convince others, rather than coerce compliance.
  • Take the next step at PLNU

Invest in the success of your employees and business by becoming a servant leader. In PLNU’s M.A. in Organizational Leadership program, you’ll have the opportunity to discover your management and leadership styles and learn how to apply your strengths through the lens of servant leadership. Watch our video below to learn more.

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why do you want to become a leader essay

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Finding common ground.

A former K-5 public school principal turned author, presenter, and leadership coach, DeWitt provides insights and advice for education leaders. He can be found at www.petermdewitt.com . Read more from this blog .

Why Would Anyone Want To Be a School Leader?

why do you want to become a leader essay

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School leadership is hard...especially now. There are point scales to contend with, evaluations based on test scores, and budget cuts that result in the lay-offs of teachers and administrative colleagues. Some leaders who have been in the position for a few years have seen cuts to programs, and have a constant need to find creativity in a very uncreative time.

On top of that leaders have students living in extreme poverty, an increase in the students with social-emotional issues, and in some cases are expected to take on the role of parents to students...and their parents. It’s hard to weed through what is important and what is not.

Why would anyone want to be a school leader these days? Trying to do the right thing at the same time we are being guided by some education departments (i.e. state, federal) to do the wrong thing doesn’t seem to be worth the stress. If that is the way you feel, run away now. Schools need leaders who will fight the status quo at the same time they fight policymakers making education worse. Students and staff deserve better.

Trust Issues When new leaders enter a position, there are many staff who are ready to support them and others who do not trust them at all. It seems unfair, especially if the leader is new to the district. Shouldn’t all staff trust their new leader? As unfortunate as it may be, it happens and new leaders should understand why it happens.

Sometimes the lack of trust occurs because the staff had a previous leader who did not treat them well at all, and others times it happens just because of the title. There are staff, parents, and even kids, who don’t trust a leader because they have the title of principal.

That has to be ok with new leaders if they plan on running a building. They can’t take it personal. The previous experience that the staff had with a school leader may have been negative. One of the first, and most important, aspects of the job is to build trust with staff, students and parents.

Leaders may not walk into a building with a clean slate but the pursuit of trust is an important one. Trust is something that is built one conversation and one action at a time. Every time a leader acts on an issue and every time they have a conversation with a one faculty member or the whole faculty, they are building trust. These conversations go into our emotional bank accounts.

Covey says,

We all know what a financial bank account is. We make deposits into it and build up reserves from which we can make withdrawals when we need to. An Emotional Bank Account is a metaphor that describes the amount of trust that's been built up in a relationship. It's the feeling of safeness you have with another human being" (1989. P. 188).

In the End It is avoidable when working with staff that we make deposits and other times we make withdrawals. Deposits happen when we support staff members through a tough time or cover their class when they need to run out for an emergency. Deposits happen with kids when leaders engage with them and show they care. Deposits also happen when kids are treated with respect during times of discipline. If students see a school leader as “human” they are more likely to trust them.

Withdrawals also happen and they can be devastating. They occur when leaders have to make decisions that staff does not agree with or when the leader makes a major mistake. School leaders are the bridge between the central office and the staff they lead. That bridge is not always clearly defined and school leaders will feel in the middle. There will be times when school leaders see both sides and other times when they don’t but have to follow through anyway.

Being in a situation that ends with a withdrawal of the emotional bank account is hard. However, if leaders did the work before these issues arise and built trust with their staff, the times they make withdrawals will not be as devastating as they could have been if the leaders did not do the work at all.

As school leaders we can call ourselves whatever we want. We can consider ourselves the “lead learner” to symbolize that we take learning very seriously. Other times we want to be approachable and go out of our way to show our door is always open. The reality is that actions speak louder than words and it takes months, even years, for school leaders to show that they are someone that staff, parents and students can trust. Every conversation and interaction helps to build a rapport, or puts a wedge in the relationship. Trust does not come easy and everyone has to work for it.

The bottom line is that school leaders can foster relationships with students, staff and parents that will last a lifetime. They help create a more engaging learning environment, and they get to work in one of the best professions. That’s why educators become school leaders.

Things to keep in mind: • Be human - People make mistakes. Don’t crucify them because of it. Address it if it is a continuing issue. • Have tough conversations - As the school leader you will have to have tough conversations with students, staff and parents. Do it respectfully. The biggest mistake new leaders, and veteran ones, make is that they will call someone out the next time an issue arises. Don’t wait until the next time. • Instill laughter into your everyday practices - Whether you are an elementary, middle or high school leader, you get to work with kids. There is no reason why everyday can’t bring laughter. These days it’s more important than ever. • Surround yourself with good people - I am nothing without my staff at school and support system at home. Your job will be much harder if you do not bond with those around you. • Check in on people - Don’t get wrapped up in your own issues. Your job is to serve those you lead, which includes students, staff and parents. • Complete teacher observations with integrity - Too often people look at observations as something to check off the list. Don’t do that because they do matter. Focus on the parts of instruction that were engaging and the other parts that need work. If you don’t, who will? • Encourage teachers to be who they are - we have too many cookie cutter approaches to education these days. Encourage teachers to be different. Encourage them to take risks. They’ll thank you AND they’ll encourage their students to do the same.

Please feel free to add to the list.

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Resource: Covey, Stephen (1989). The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Simon & Schuster. New York, N.Y.

The opinions expressed in Peter DeWitt’s Finding Common Ground are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.

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Interview questions answered: Why do you want to be a Principal?

Leading a school, or any other educational institution, is a serious endeavor. One needs to know what they are doing, unless they surround themselves with an experienced team of assistants and administrators to help them out. You can become an excellent school principal, without ever working as an assistant principal, or holding any other leadership role at school. Yet to succeed, reach your goals, and earn a great salary, you’ll have to navigate a tricky selection process , often consisting of several interview rounds . One of the questions you will always face–and sometimes more than once (job application, essay, interviews), is the “why” question. Why you want to work as a Principal?

I’ve done the job before, and I’ve been a part of the hiring committee many times . I can assure you that someone always asked the “why question”. And while it is neither the most difficult question you will face, nor the most important one, your answer matters. Remaining silent or blabbering will immediately disqualify you from the selection process, and you won’t even get a chance to prove your skills and readiness for the job while dealing with other challenges of your interview.

Anyway, let us have a look at an interesting list of 7 sample answers to this question. With a help of my colleague I tried to come up with some variety of answers on my list. Answers for first time applicants, experienced, conventional but also out of the box answers. I hope reading them you will get some food for thought, and at the end of the process you’ll emerge with your own perfect answer to the “why question”. Enjoy your reading!

7 sample answers to “Why do you want to be a School Principal?” interview question

  • I want to be a principal because I believe I can take this school to the next level . I’ve been teaching here for years already. Knowing the teachers, students, parents, and other stakeholders, I know exactly the challenges this school faces , and have a plan how to tackle each one of them (we can elaborate on this later in the interviews). What’s more, my desire to make things better is strong , since I also live in this community. Making the life at school better for everyone is probably the most I can achieve while doing a service to local community, and it is my dream to do so.
  • I just believe to have what it takes to become a great leader of this school . Judging by my previous experience and successes I achieved as a teacher and vice principal, I feel I have the qualities and skills to lead the team here , to represent the school in the eyes of public, and to simply do a great job as a principal. In my opinion , we should strive for excellence in life . I’ve done my duty as a student, teacher, vice principal. And I did well I believe. Now it is time to make another step and benefit from my entire experience in the highest role one can have at school.
  • Considering my experience and things I achieved as an assistant principal, both on management and organizational level, and in daily contact with my colleagues and students, I feel that I can really help to transform this school to a better place , and address the problems it faces right now. When I saw the job opening I considered it for a long time, imagined my job, and the responsibility it carries. The more I thought about it, the more I felt a desire to apply. The responsibility and the options this position offers are very motivating .
  • I’ve been working on leadership positions in the school district for years. And while I believe I did a good job, and helped the entire district with a difficult transformation through the pandemics, the true is that I missed daily contact with students and teachers . While I was in a way “directing the play”, I missed “being on the stage”, if you understand what I mean. Hence I decided to submit my application for this principal role. For many people it may seem illogical, since I earn better as a deputy superintendent, but salary is not everything. In my opinion, it is important to see the meaningful purpose in your work and enjoy your everyday life, and I believe I will do that as a principal.
  • It is a goal I’ve been following since high school . I chose my education accordingly, studying education leadership and later getting my PhD in Education . It’s been a long time at school, and though I know learning never ends in life, I finally hope to put all my knowledge and education to the text. And I cannot see a better place to start than an elementary school , since I think a principal at elementary does not face as many challenges as principals do face at secondary or high school. That’s why I applied for the job with you, and I hope to convince you of my readiness to do this role, and to become a great principal at your school.
  • Better questions would be why not? Let’s be honest: Who would not want to work as a principal at this school? You’ve done an amazing job up to this point here. The place runs like a well-oiled machine, and if the current principal wasn’t going to retire this year, she would not doubt continue doing a great job. But the time has come for a change, and someone else will get this prestigious job. I feel that I have the qualification and commitment , and what the job has to offer in terms of remuneration, prestige, but also professional challenges, is just a dream come true for every motivated professional in education administration. That’s why I see no reason why I would not apply for this job.
  • First of all I have the passion for this role. Working in education in general is highly motivating for me, and you can be sure I do not struggle to get up from bed in the morning . On the contrary, I am looking forward to my days, trying to make a positive difference in the life of all stakeholders in this school district. Secondly, because I have the experience . I’ve never worked as a principal before, but leading this and that department at school, and being involved in the solution of many challenges , I feel to be ready to spearhead the entire school. Thirdly, because I have a plan for this place , how to make it better. Before the interviews I thought about it a lot, and came up with 5 key strengths and 5 areas of improvement for this school. I know what I want to achieve here, and believe it is possible, with such a great team as you already have onboard. And last but not least, because it has always been my career aspiration to become a principal , and I feel it the time has arrived to make it happen…

Final thoughts and answers to other tough interview questions for principals

Selection process for principal role is always complex , and the “why question” is just one of many you will have to deal with on your way towards a coveted prize–the job of a principal . Nevertheless, it is one of the first questions you will face, and sometimes the very first one. Dealing with it smoothly helps with setting the right tune for the entire interview, and also it helps to calm down and overcome the interview nerves that even the most experienced people often struggle with…

I hope that my list of 7 sample answers gave you some good ideas , and you now know what you want to say in the interviews, or write on your essay. I suggest you to check also my article about 40 most common principal interview questions , and I wish you best of luck on the big day!

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Why passion is critical to success in life and as a leader.

Forbes Business Development Council

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Executive Vice President of Sales at NAVCO , leading the company’s strategic sales growth and team for the company in North America.

I recently had the opportunity to attend an executive security event where I heard various generations (including an eighth generation!) speak on guiding their company's legacy and family-owned alarm business. They discussed the challenges of next-generation ownership and family leadership wrapped around all the changes in the world—people, technology, etc. But one thing I saw that did not change was a consistent thread of passion for the company through all those generations—passion for their family, passion for the company and employees and passion to serve the customers they had worked hard to support and provide services to.

You might be thinking: Why is passion so important, Angie? Couldn’t I just be selling or representing the best possible and most amazing solution on the block that everyone needs? Do you think Henry Ford was passionate when he presented his idea of the first Quadricycle? Was Steve Jobs passionate when he created a computer company named after a fruit? What in the inner core of your being says: This makes me passionate about selling, presenting or providing a solution to my next potential or existing customer ? Is it the product or the conviction of what you are selling—and possibly that it will make the lives of your customers or company that much better?

My faith has always made me passionate. It drives me every morning and night and gives me the comfort of knowing that what I do is for the better good, not just what the world views as success. How do you find the passion in what you do and sell? What makes you passionate about building your leadership with that same feeling?

When you are looking to present a solution or idea to someone, having passion will provide a complete differentiator from the next person. My favorite comments in my career at both my current and past jobs have always been, "Angie will get you excited about whatever she is selling." You know why? Because I believed in it 100%, and that is what's led me to my selling successes in the past as well as today.

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To help guide my passion, here are two pillars I believe are important for success.

I have always told my son that when you are looking to show your dedication to work, growth and digging into whatever you believe in, it really is about the person who gets to the office (and nowadays, maybe even the home office) first and leaves last. Dedication is the foundation to say, “I am going to stay even when it gets hard, but I believe in what I am doing." It also sparks the core values of most people when trying to show people why you showed up to work today at all. Passion without dedication does not work; they work together or not at all.

Great companies focus on their core values and have a foundation or moral center of the company that says, "If you belong here, these are the values we want you to embrace."

Our company's core values are quality, teamwork, respect, honesty, integrity and responsibility. They are printed on everything we do and are part of who we are. We also talk about them all the time to remind people that their passion and values will guide them along the path they are going. Sometimes, we see where this gets out of alignment, and it's our job to remind not only our peers but also our leaders and our team that works for us where they have strayed. Accountability is the key to values being followed and embraced.

Passion, dedication and values will give you a reason to show up all day and every day and love what you do. If there comes a time on your journey when you lose that passion, maybe it's time to dig in and understand if this is a temporary challenge or if you are being called to something bigger and better and maybe even different. I guarantee you great leadership will always embrace your need for passion in what you do and encourage you to find it when and if the time comes your journey to success lies somewhere different.

Forbes Business Development Council is an invitation-only community for sales and biz dev executives. Do I qualify?

Angie Barnes

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