Over the past 12 years I’ve been blessed to mentor powerful leaders across a variety of industries. I’m not sure if they realize how much I have learned from them. One of the many pearls of wisdom they have shared is in answering, “What skills are critical to your role as a leader?”

1. Be Consistent. What you see and hear is what you get Monday to Monday. A leader’s communication is consistent no matter who they talk to and no matter which medium they push their message through. Their listeners never need to wonder who is going to show up. They have created a reputation they’re proud of because they keep a close check on how others experience them and what they leave behind.

2. Embrace Brevity. A leader has the focus and control to communicate clear and concise messages, especially under pressure. This strength allows them to listen and adapt their message on-the-fly to their listeners’ experience, knowledge level and need.

Another element of brevity is knowing what to communicate. Your teams don’t need to know the struggles, hurdles and hours you spent resolving a problem or landing the new partner agreement. Rather, your listeners’ trust, credibility and confidence in you come from your proven results.

3. Follow Through. Leaders respond to messages in a timely manner – within 24 hours. Even when they don’t have an immediate answer, they never leave their receiver hanging. They know the simple yet powerful act of follow-through communicates respect.

4. Focus on Mental Growth. Leaders surround themselves with activities that challenge and motivate them. The leaders I mentor have the busiest schedules yet somehow can schedule time each day to read and learn. They never lose the courage or allow their egos to get in the way of asking for feedback and searching for ways to build their reputation.

5. Just Do It. Leaders avoid procrastination. They don’t have time to procrastinate; they only have time to execute.

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