Continuing our series on the dimensions of leadership, this week we will discuss “Leading” and the purpose of leaders within organizations. We find that the most successful leaders consider their purpose within their role to be

“to act from a perspective of service and development of others.”

Leading is a privilege that is earned. It is not to be taken lightly. It is about operating with a sense of service to something bigger than one’s self. It requires a willingness to guide and direct for the purpose of the greater good.

Leading well is adding value to the organization and its members. It is a catalyst to business performance improvement. It can often be the biggest differentiator that an organization can lay claim to.

Among the most critical skills in leading are driving and managing change, executing organizational strategy, coaching and developing others. Leading requires creativity, connectedness, fairness, communication skills and the ability to achieve.

Leaders who score high on the Leading dimension might:

  • Proactively make decisions
  • Add value
  • Act with a sense of ownership
  • Coach and develop others
  • Build a high-quality leadership pipeline
  • Focus on management culture
  • Drive and manage change
  • Execute organizational strategy
  • Champion engagement efforts

How can we determine if a leader scores high in the Leading dimension?

A series of 4 attributes are commonly associated with the Leading dimension. By utilizing our Legacy Leadership 360 assessment, we can determine the level that the person involved in the assessment is rated (by themselves, coworkers and peers) at the following attributes:

Promotes Autonomy

The leader that promotes autonomy values the talents, thinking and contributions that others make to the organization. They recognize and trust the abilities of individuals and looks for ways to bring out the best in them. Promoting autonomy means providing support for the individual to do on their own, without doing for them.

Promoting autonomy requires a high level of trust to allow others to use their talents, makes decisions, and make some mistakes from time to time. There is a requirement for the leader to have tolerance for things that are not going exactly right.

Fosters Relevance

The leader that fosters relevance helps others succeed. They are interested in building the esteem of others. They help others see the value in their own contributions. To foster relevance, the leader recognizes the unique value that individuals bring and shares feedback about the importance of their impact.

When people are valued for their competence and skills, they feel relevant. When a leader fosters relevance, they take actions that leverage the capability of others.


The accountable leader is willing to make decisions and take actions. They set clear expectations for themselves and they accept responsibility for the results expected of them. To be accountable means to address performance issues and encourage
themselves and others to take action to improve performance.

Choosing to be accountable requires a willingness to face the undesirable or unfavorable outcomes that could occur. An accountable leader does not blame the external environment or others when things do go as planned. They know there are always other ways to have done something, or can still do, to change results.


The self-aware leader has a realistic view of their abilities. They have a sense of what they do well and what needs to be improved upon. They will admit to growth areas and look for development opportunities. They understand what motivates them and what frustrates them on how to reconcile these emotions. They recognize how subjective their opinions of self can be.

The self-aware leader will seek feedback and be open to it, regardless of favorability. They don’t view feedback as a threat, but rather an assist in growth and development. They will create improvement plans and hold themselves accountable, including
ongoing feedback to see how they’re doing. They take advantage of opportunities to strengthen their skills, often through training, self-development or additional education.

Effective leadership is key to driving business results and becoming a more effective leader starts with awareness.

The Legacy Leadership 360 assessment is a powerful tool to assess which areas require further training or coaching in order for your organization’s leaders to become more effective.

Our 360 leadership assessment is different from other individual survey tools. Designed to provide immediately actionable feedback on the dimensions and qualities most closely linked to a leader’s ability to perform effectively in their role, it leverages the latest research from both social and cognitive neuroscience. It is simple to administer, intuitively relevant and highly cost effective. Whether used in conjunction with our experienced coaches or alone with its easy-to-understand User Report, its impact and value for your current and emerging leaders will be immediate.

If you are interested in furthering the development of the leaders within your organization, we encourage you to email or call us at 888-892-0300.