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The Eleven Skills of Leadership

The following links to sections describe the eleven leadership skills as they are taught within White Stag Leadership Development by those who learned from the program founders. The leadership competencies were organized into eleven general categories by our founder Béla Bánáthy that are easily teachable.
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Getting and Giving Information Understanding Group Needs and Characteristics Knowing and Understanding Group Resources Controlling the Group Counseling Setting the Example Representing the Group Planning Evaluation Sharing Leadership Manager of Learning

Because of the differences in maturity and experience among girls and boys in ages ranging from 10½ to 17, these eleven competencies (our curriculum) are divided into what three phases designed to meet their needs.
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Patrol Leader Development Program Patrol Member Development Program Troop Leader Development Program

Getting and Giving Information
Getting and Giving Information is probably the #1 competency required of leaders. If you cannot communicate effectively, then no other leadership skill will compensate for this lack. First and foremost, you must be able to exchange information effectively and accurately. There are three distinct aspects to communication, or getting and getting information: Getting it, retrieving it, and giving it.
Getting Information

When getting or receiving information, you may be watching for a variety of clues to gather meaning: not only verbal or written information, but nonverbal behavior as well. If you are not careful, facts will be forgotten or distorted. This is because both the individual sending and the person receiving the information may unintentionally obscure the message. There are two ways you can insure that the information you receive will not be forgotten or distorted:
• • Take notes. Always write down key information received. Repeat back what you think you heard the person say.

relax. or the content of the message. In addition. Because we believe an imaginative leader thinks openly and creatively about resources. and it is. including note-taking. but include people's skills.While you may think you understand what you think you heard. • • • • • • Speak clearly. Smile. Use feedback and reflective listening to keep your verbal and non-verbal communication in sync. We teach leaders that the group's ability to recognize and utilized diverse resources tremendously affects what the group can accomplish. Giving Information When giving information. and diagrams. • • • • • • Show interest by leaning forward. attitudes. Greet new ideas with interest. Retrieving Information Information received may have to be recalled at a later time. Encourage two-way flow—ask questions and get them asking questions of you. and so forth. you can involve more people in active leadership by giving each a part according to his or her resources. . They aren't just limited to the physical resources. Use language that everyone understands. background. Take notes of the main ideas and review your notes soon afterwards to make sure they continue to make sense. Eyeball the listener." What are those? That's exactly where we want you to start thinking. "Resources of the Group. nodding in agreement. Use the individual's name. Don't pass judgement on the question or the questioner. Knowing and Understanding Resources of the Group Sounds like a mouthful. When you use the group's resources. and mnemonic devices. the sender controls what and how is said. Use visuals— charts. Maintain eye contact. use all five senses whenever possible. and be friendly. We help individuals learn about member's backgrounds and experiences is an effective technique for bringing a group together and creating commitment to common goals. Give the individual your undivided attention. The recipient controls what is heard and the feedback given. Vary your tone and pace. Move from the general to the specific. you need to encourage others to speak freely. taking notes. memorization. paying attention. Today. we naturally think of computers as a means for storing and retrieving information. You can employ a variety of methods to help you remember details. There are many different ways to store and retrieve information. you may in fact have gotten it totally wrong. To encourage good communication. Clarify and verify! In a communication exchange. maps. repeating back. The medium is not as important as what your write and how you store the information.

It accelerates the rate at which the group begins to coalesce and develop commitment to a common purpose. Sets the pace. while the responsibility for success rests on the members. is available. . As a leader exerts control. Instructs. 6. Our process increases the intensity of the exchanges. 2. To effectively control the team. He counsels an individual to help him "set a better example." Buy the complete book here. internal manner of control that we hope others will model (when it's positive and appropriate). allow members to use their own initiative. Remains humble and continually strives to serve the team. Greater productivity and increased quality are the results. Observes. We help individuals improve as leaders by bringing this skills to the forefront. Coordinating individual efforts for collective purpose is externally and internally controlled —by the leader and each individual. demonstrating their willingness to do anything asked of team members. a leader: 1. Recognizes that responsibility for failure is on the leader. Setting the Example is a personal. Reacts. He stands at certain times to maintain or assert control. It provides an informal but recognized stage where group leaders and members can learn about more each other. to encourage greater participation. As a Manager of Learning. As a leader. There are specific actions a leader can take to exert influence over a team. 3. It's often informal and unstated. Praises good work. etc. If the work is going well. Be ready to help individuals with specific needs. knowledge. An effective leaders always sets an excellent example. We challenge individuals and the group to draw on each other for resources and assistance. serendipitous encounter. 5. Helping members learn about group resources This competency enhances the accidental. The leader in a team deploys the people in his patrol in a manner to promote control. Observes the team. Counsels. quietly offers suggestions to correct errors. promoting honesty and trust. do not intrude. find out which phase is right for you or apply for camp today. To attend camp. but does not dominate. Keeps a positive attitude and does not criticize. Correct mistakes with respect and without passing judgment.All groups go through the process of uncovering their resources. Showing off a school transcript or resume is not what we mean. The most effective leader is out in front. Encourages all members to give their best. Inspects. he balances getting the job done and keeping the team together. Give suggestions for improvement rather than orders. and abilities. In this way they get a hands-on experience about exactly what resources are and how to use them! Controlling the Group A group exists for a purpose. Communicate clearly. Controlling Team Performance is a close companion of the competency Setting the Example. breaking up destructive cliques. it is a good idea to introduce activities that help the individuals in the group to become acquainted with one another's skills. Control is the throttle on the group's engine—the energy that gives it direction. Control is most often an overt behavior of the leader. provide direct assistance and additional instruction. 4. communicates with the members. If required.

Just having their worries or problems heard by another gives the person a sense that his or her problems are legitimate.Counseling Counseling employes simple. They will seek you out and ask for counsel from you. Setting the Example As a leader." Enables a learner to see a need for change—a change in his attitude— and accept the help you or members of his patrol or others can give him. You can't turn them away or just let them suffer. • • Is focused on what to do "until the doctor arrives. like lawyers.” When troubled. it is a private talk with someone that helps the individual with a personal problem. At its simplest. All Rights Reserved. bankers. vocational counselors. will almost inevitably become a group problem. Since we define leadership as a property of the group. Why should leaders learn to counsel? Why should a team leader. if serious. individuals will grow to respect you. Buy it now—only $10. anyone is by definition a leader. While a very simple competency on the face of it. trusting environment. to voice their concerns and express what’s troubling them. lay coaching and communciation techniques. people will come to you with problems. psychiatrists and others. many times it helps the individual to just talk it out. need to know how to counsel? Why is it considered one of the competencies a leader ought to know? • • Because everyone has challenges or problems from time to time. because the ignored problem. Setting the Example is one way all members can influence the group. Professional counselors." Excerpts from Resources for Leadership ebook. you will spot people with problems. Because as an effective leader. Your payment helps us defray the cost of our web presence. Brief passages may be quoted for reviews or commentary. Because you are a leader. People often pay large amounts of money to be counseled. thus perhaps increasing their self-esteem and their feelings of adequacy in handling the situation. and at its essence the act of influencing a group to achieve its goals. Counseling: • • • Encourages individuals to talk and express their feelings in a safe. Helps reduce minor interpersonal aches and pains—common sense stuff. for instance. “Counseling” is sometimes just another word for “listening. For the complete book on all 11 leadership skills. As a leader. Helps the person talk about "where it hurts. none is more important. Copyright 2012 Brian Phelps. Counseling is considered pretty difficult. Fail to demonstrate this competency to members of your group. Setting the Example means that your public and private lives are transparent and unified. and you are doomed to negative . clergymen. teachers. sometimes spend years learning how to counsel in their fields.

A leader must represent his team on a great variety of issues. motivation. If you have character. everything you do and say should line up with the best possible examples of leadership. Representing the Group Representing the Group is accurately communicating to non-group members the sum of group members' feelings. and even love. For this kind of leader. the representative. Realize that other groups may derive their entire picture of another group through you. enjoys their respect. and vice versa. and be fair to all parties. ideas. and enthusiasm. if you don’t match it with your walk. you help facilitate the results you want as a leader. Accurately and responsibly communicate from and back to the original group.results. if your character has integrity—that is. No matter how good a line you talk. you must: • • • • Fully understand the nature of the problem. For this kind of leader. loyalty. You must be consistent. loyalty. Setting the Example is where your backbone shows. to faithfully represent the group. where a decision at each step helps clarify your choices in the next step. Representing the Group is more an art than an exact science. Know how the decision (if any) was reached and be able to communicate it to others. if who you are in public is the same person you are in private—you will accomplish far more than you might imagine possible. that the ideas they develop are good. why should you expect group members to do any better? To help keep the group together and get the job done. When you set the example. They will come to feel that what they think matters. If you fail to set the example. . possess integrity. Under any circumstances. If you have character. Some of these issues and the need for a decision representing group interests will be known in advance. It's an issue requiring decision-making skill. others will not be. if your character has integrity--that is. you will earn no respect and find it increasingly difficult to get the group to work with you. as long as he takes care of his follower’s needs. etc. but that doesn't stop you! Setting the Example is where your backbone shows. When the requirement to represent a group regarding a specific issue is known beforehand. you will positively influence their attitude. and even love. then the entire representation issue is much more manageable. if who you are on the outside is lined up with who you are on the inside--you will accomplish far more than you might imagine possible. It may be more difficult under some circumstances to set a positive example. as long as he takes care of his follower's needs.. enjoys their respect. You can use the suggested questions after each step to help define the details for each task. Planning Planning as an ongoing process. If you are effective at representing your group. and that they are making a positive contribution to the entire group.

negotiation. Planning is useful both in group situations and one-on-one. you are more confident about the information you gather and the decision you make based on that information. By following a proven planning structure. This produces improved outcomes. consider the task. When you engage in a structured decision-making process. Along with Evaluation and Manager of Learning. About Problem-Solving Problem-Solving has six "phases": The cyclical planning procedure. performance appraisal. is to:  Reach group agreement on the nature of the task and commitment to resolve it. scheduling. and conflict resolution. including problem-solving.The effective use of planning will do more than any other competency to advance both getting the job done and keeping the group together. you can improve the number and quality of options available to you at each step of the process. The Goal of Planning The goal of planning is to improve the quality of the decisions made and the results achieved. 1.” It offers a general conceptual framework to integrate a variety of related skills. Skilled use of this competency helps you get the job done and keep the group together in all kinds of situations. Your clarity of judgment is improved and can make firm decisions with fewer chances that you will secondguess yourself later on. . Planning is one of the most critical and complex competencies that you can master. Planning is a “core competency. Consider the Task ○ The purpose of the first step of Planning. It is an “umbrella” competency in its effect on a variety of issues. time management.

 2. The purpose of the second step of Planning. is one of the five founding principles of the White Stag program. physical. and human resources available to the group. In almost any situation. The purpose of the third step of Planning. Along with Evaluation and Manager of Learning. except when responding to purely mechanical systems. Analysis ○ Identify internal and external constraints and support for the issue. Generate Alternatives ○ 4. "Always. it turns out. We call this the "Evaluation Attitude. "When do you evaluate?" and he'll tell you. is to determine the time." . About Evaluation Ask a Patrol Member Development candidate at the end of the summer camp. Evaluation and feedback ○ The purpose of the fifth step of Planning. Create a variety of ideas and systematically evaluate them. is to:    Examine as many alternative solutions or responses to a problem or situation as possible. 3. Problem-solving includes: • • • Using specified skills to identify the nature of a given situation or task. so we continually evaluate how we are doing. Alternative methods for determining the appropriate solution Applying guidelines for analyzing a task or problem in order to solve it. Skilled use of this competency positively influences the leader's ability to get the job done and keep the group together in all kinds of situations. this competency is one of the most critical and complex in leadership development. make a decision. We constantly strive to improve ourselves. is to:   Obtain members’ commitment to a solution. Implementation ○ The purpose of the fifth step of Planning. consider the resources. 5. consider the alternatives." This attitude. evaluation. Evaluation Evaluation is the constant companion of the White Stag learner and staff member. is to look at what happened and pass on what we learned to our group and to other groups. we must consider the task and the people. Gain input from all team members and their commitment to an eventual solution. Analyze all of the information gathered and choose the best solution.

the situation. Our desire is to improve our evaluation skills so that we evaluate in the same manner a eagle soars on the winds: constantly testing. Evaluation is. two things: • • An attitude of continuous striving for higher goals. etc. time. "What is evaluation?" and he'll tell you everything the others have said and add. in essence. position relative to our target. flow. all the elements that affect our reaching and surpassing the next mountain peak. direction. and the group relationship." Ask a third candidate. The White Stag program has since 1958 described five styles of leadership: Telling. consciously and unconsciously. as illustrated in the diagrma below. strength." Evaluation is a continual process. This is because competitive. A process for judging an individual's or group's completion of a task against previously identified standards. of judging a situation against a standard. . and the group. either informal or formal. the situation. "We evaluate how well the group is keeping itself together and how well we're getting the job done. Selling. wind current. Consulting. authortarian styles of leadership are less and less responsive to the complex challenges facing society today. less experienced or insecure leaders will tend to lean on the more authoritarian types of leadership because they desire the role and title of leader to bolster their self-esteem. Sharing Leadership eadership encourages the leader to select an appropriate style of leadership based on the task. bowed under a large pack.Ask another candidate from Patrol Leader Development "what do you look for when you evaluate?" and he'll say. Joining (or consensus). Generally. a young woman from Troop Leader Development. possible improvements.. and things to keep. These styles of leadership are appropriate depending on the task. Sharing Leadership Shared problem-solving and decision-making is an increasingly prevalent aspect of successful management and leadership worldwide. our altitude. "The strong and the weak points.

you must find a style of leadership most suited to the occasion that balances your own maturity and capabilities and the group's maturity and ability. Leadership Skills The Emphasis is on Learning Managers of Learning are different from "teachers" or "instructors. along with contextual dynamics. Our youth staff. the more long-range the goal. The Session 2 July 22–28. The • Summer Camp. emphasis is on learning. Teaching connotes activities too typically 2012 requiring a lecture hall and a large number of desks. you must consider the appropriateness of each style relative to the forces generated by the situation and from within the group. teacher. • Summer Camp.and long-term goals. For example. not on what the instructor 2012 teaches. unselfish leaders— true servants of the group — are not reluctant to encourage group participation and ownership of a decision. Managing of Learning Upcoming Events • Candidate Orientation Day—May 12. the short. Effective. enlightened. the more you need the participation of every member in group decisions and their commitment to achieving the goal.and they lack confidence in their skills. further influence the style of leadership appropriate to the occasion. A way of assessing the desirability of a leadership style or the need for sharing leadership with the team is to consider both the groups' short. The styles are easily viewed as being most to least authoritarian. who conceived of the eleven leadership skills. emergency situations do not lend themselves to consultation or delegation. In any situation. 2012 The phrase Manager of Learning was defined by Béla Bánáthy.and long-range goals. Talented. phrase manager of learning is carefully chosen." They know that people are not blank slates empty of knowledge. as managers of learning. mature leaders employ the most appropriate style based on the context. help the youth participants to become more effective leaders. We believe a Manager of Learning is not simply a Session 1 July 8–14. The leader's and the group's maturity. On the other hand. They recognize that participants • • • History of the Leadership Skills Getting and Giving Information Understanding Group . Through all leadership situations.

Manager of Learning has four steps: 1. Participants are often shocked by the action. not as a class or group. Manager of Learning describes a system for exposing learners to the need to know and involving them in their own learning. rather than telling. therefore. Teach/Learn 3. and Knowledge By learning. Sometimes this is abbreviated to "KSA. We believe the focus is always on the participants' learning. first. Evaluation Improving Attitudes. Whoever accepts the responsibility for managing learning must use unusual techniques to get unusual results. each individual leader must learn or all will receive an inferior experience. Application 4. we stage a public "dressing-down" of their counselor. is perhaps the main difference between a teacher and a manager of learning. Research has proved that learning is more lasting when individuals modify their attitude or belief systems. We ask. skills. or the development of attitudes in a certain area. The Manager of Learning is most effective when he embraces techniques that influence attitudes. Needs and Characteristics • Knowing and Understanding Group Resources Controlling the Group Counseling Setting the Example Representing the Group Planning Evaluation Sharing Leadership Manager of Learning • • • • • • • • A Learning Discovery Process The Manager of Learning (previously known in some circles as Effective Teaching) competency is more complex than other leadership competencies we develop. This asking comprises the first of the four steps of manager of learning. Or maybe they don't know they don't know. because maybe the learner already knows. the Guided Discovery. Maybe they know but haven't realized that it applies in this situation. . For example. not the teacher's teaching. So we ask him.learn as individuals. we mean the gaining of knowledge. the improvement of skills. once participants have settled into camp and built a relationship with their youth staff counselors. A combination of attitudes. and knowledge are usually needed to operate successfully in any specific area. what is the barber going to do with that razor?— it might be better to turn it around to ASK! And it happens that asking." Attitudes are obviously more important than skills or knowledge— after all. Attitudes are the most important and are the most difficult to acquire. Skills. They know each individual is important. Guided Discovery 2.

During a debriefing. it is a method for leadership development which is essential to participatory leadership development. Simple. find out which phase is right for you or apply for camp today. MOL is not only one of the competencies taught in Junior Leader Training. lay counselling techniques are often used to enable a learner to see a need for change—a change in his attitude— and accept the help you or members of his patrol or others can give him. communication. and other leadership skills. . loyalty. Buy the complete book here. We not only teach a competency called Manager of Learning. but we should be applying its principles in everything we do during the learning program. Cyclical— new learning is based on old learning plateaus. because learning is: • • Open ended. Not confined to one "right way". Not Lock-step The Manager of Learning process is not lock-step but at the learner's own pace of discovery. It is a heuristic learning process. we expose the mock dressing-down and use the experience as an opportunity to explore concepts of team work.and the entire team is usually thrown into turmoil. To attend camp. counseling.