Great Leaders Have Great Interpersonal Skills

We were at a dinner. It was a special dinner with several courses each paired with a wine. The idea was to teach a little about wine and also sell the wines, of course.

It was a group experience. Most of us came as couples, not as a large group. We entered the room to discover it was set up with several long tables. We were going to share a table with six people whom we did not know.

The man adjacent to my wife was an owner of a local company. He was personable. Asked a lot of questions of my wife and the other people. Seemed genuinely interested in the other people’s lives.

My wife has been to many business dinners with me by now and has met many business owners or ranking executives. She comes from a working class background, so it was initially all new to her.

After the dinner on the drive home, she said, “Men like him are always interested in other people. They make others feel at ease. They are interested in others.”

An astute observation.

Recently while reading on leadership, I ran across this observation, “Great leaders have great interpersonal skills. They care for their people. As a leader, you need to know how to listen quietly and hear what people are really saying, by asking questions and being open to the truth. When challenges come, it’s especially important to open up and show you care.”

I’m watching a friend start a new business. He really cares about all the people he has hired for the team. He guides those who need a little help. He encourages each one. It’s a joy to watch.

No matter where you are called to be a leader, this is a great role model. Leadership isn’t all about me. It’s really all about them. How can I help them? How can I nurture them? How much do I care?


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