The Test Every Great Leader Must Pass

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Are you a good leader?

A great leader?

How can you even know?

You can take the test……..

Most leaders are too busy to spend much time reflecting on that question, but it really is important to check in once in a while—especially if results, achievement and excellence are important to you. Whether you’re a CEO, a vice president, director, team leader, neighborhood association leader, or parent, you can become a much more effective leader if you keep yourself on track. Take the test:

Do you have concise and compelling vision?
A great leader has the capacity to create a compelling vision and translate it into reality. When your vision is clear and understandable, it inspires others to help make it happen. Is your vision clear? Do others understand it? Have you inspired them to help you transform it into reality?

Have you identified your role and responsibilities?
Leadership isn’t earned by a title or position, but great leaders need to understand the scope and boundaries of their responsibilities. Too many roles are ill-defined, leading to confusion, but it’s a clearly defined role and responsibilities that allow you to take effective action and be held accountable for results.

Do you have strategies and goals?
Having a vision and taking responsibility are important to leadership, but not much can get accomplished without a strategy or goals. Goals define results and let everyone know in concrete terms what they’re working toward—and when they’ve successfully achieved it.

Are you decisive in solving critical challenges?
You don’t always have the time to make a perfect decision; in today’s fast-paced world, lengthy deliberation and debate are luxuries. In the middle of a situation, you have to be confident enough to quickly evaluate the situation and take an action that has a high probability of success. Great leaders know how to make decisions of all types. They know when to take the time to use analytical and thorough decision-making processes. They know when to engage the whole team, and when to make decisions on their own.

Do you communicate often and with clarity?
At its heart, communication is the real work of leadership. Because everyone hears things in different ways, it is up to leader to communicate frequently and honestly, with openness and a commitment to listening as well as being heard. Your words have great power, so use them to inspire and support others.

Do you lead with positivity and enthusiasm?
A leader’s attitude, negative or positive, is contagious. The best leaders go out of their way to stay positive even in negative and challenging times—and that positivity, spread among the entire team, has the power to create better outcomes. Are you as positive and enthusiastic as you would like it to be?

Do you work on developing others?
Once you become a leader, your focus moves from your own development to helping others grow. When you do, you not only build a stronger team, but you communicate to members how much you value them. True leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders.

Do you treat failure as a teacher?
We all make mistakes, and we all have failures. But it’s when you can turn those failures into learning experiences that you move closer to success. Failure in leadership doesn’t mean the game is over—it means it’s time to try again, with more experience. Remember, failure is not the opposite of success; it’s part of success.

Do you show appreciation to others?
Appreciation is the best way of bringing out excellence in others. It builds loyalty and creates momentum for the entire team. Those who feel appreciated will always outperform those who don’t.

Do you lead by example?
When you’re a leader, your words, your actions, your behavior are all being watched. People may doubt what you say but they will always believe what you do, so make sure your actions follow your words. Are you leading by example? People have to be motivated to follow you before they will care about your vision.

How did you score? There are no winners and losers here, but look at each point that tripped you up and begin

Lead From Within: We don’t know who we are until we see what we can do.



N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

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Photo Credit: Drawn by Lolly Daskal

Lolly Daskal is one of the most sought-after executive leadership coaches in the world. Her extensive cross-cultural expertise spans 14 countries, six languages and hundreds of companies. As founder and CEO of Lead From Within, her proprietary leadership program is engineered to be a catalyst for leaders who want to enhance performance and make a meaningful difference in their companies, their lives, and the world.

Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR,, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.

  1. Anna B.

    27. Jul, 2016

    Great article! Loved the self evaluation and food for thought.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Lisa Bower

    27. Jul, 2016

    This is excellent, a great support tool to reflect upon throughout the year hank you

    Reply to this comment
  3. khaleduz

    28. Jul, 2016

    we do learn in every articles thank you…

    Reply to this comment
  4. Stephen Rodgers

    30. Jul, 2016


    I greatly appreciate your tireless efforts in posting these unmatchable articles, so far I have known.

    I really see me in them and they have been of great help in helping me properly understand proper stances in leadership. You are an inspiration, don’t stop.

    How I wish leadership curriculums were designed along these lines! I like your touch, and it’s so personal_ so unique. Bless you.


    Reply to this comment
  5. Chery Gegelman

    31. Jul, 2016

    Great post Lolly!

    Your first point reminds me of an answer I received from a candidate that I was interviewing for a position on our team.

    I asked what kind of leadership motivated and inspired her. I can still hear her voice, “The kind of leader that knows where they are going and takes people with them.”

    Her answer became a way for me to self-audit, frequently asking myself if the vision is clear and if I am doing a good job of taking others with me.

    Reply to this comment
  6. jaime lopera

    01. Aug, 2016


    Reply to this comment
  7. Shabnam Haseeb

    04. Aug, 2016

    Thanks for sharing thought provoking article

    Reply to this comment
  8. Shabnam Haseeb

    04. Aug, 2016

    Thanks for sharing thought provoking article .Excellent

    Reply to this comment

    08. Aug, 2016

    very helpful Daskal! Be blessed.

    Reply to this comment
  10. Yanglish

    09. Aug, 2016

    Real food for thought. Very helpful and practical.

    Thank you for this test.

    Reply to this comment
  11. Charles

    12. Aug, 2016

    Many Thanks Mrs. Lolly Daskal

    Reply to this comment
  12. ramesh morya

    31. Aug, 2016

    Good xpirens..

    Reply to this comment
  13. David Mbina

    07. Jan, 2017

    Lolly you are too special thanks once more

    Reply to this comment
  14. Hisham

    20. Jan, 2017

    Excellent and. Dry practical. I worked with a leader, in a small organization, who rarely comiunicated and consequently staff had very little idea on what his vision and goals were. Nine years later the company was for sale.

    Reply to this comment
  15. Tarun Bhatt

    25. Feb, 2017

    Great one Lolly this very much important for a leader to follow this. Thanks for sharing such a good write up

    Reply to this comment
  16. Paramjit Singh

    20. May, 2017

    An excellent article. I appreciate your tireless work.

    Reply to this comment
  17. Rekha

    09. Jun, 2017

    Thank you Lolly for sharing a thought-provoking article on self-evaluation and the leadership test. Very helpful.

    Reply to this comment
  18. Juan

    14. Jun, 2017

    Very good article, very inspirational!

    Reply to this comment
  19. Minnie G.

    14. Jun, 2017

    I love the statement: ” We all make mistakes, and we all have failures. But it’s when you can turn those failures into learning experiences that you move closer to success” that is exactly what we should do when we run into some trials and challenges, to never give up. Thanks for a wonderful article.

    Reply to this comment
  20. Tharesa Lee

    03. Sep, 2017

    You nailed it. I see components of servant leadership, social leadership, Executive leadership and grassroots leadership.

    Reply to this comment

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