leadership skills inspiration

The mark of a great leader - the ability to inspire.

Published on Sep 17, 2023 by Guy Baker

As the CEO of the world's largest team building network, people often ask me what makes a great leader. There is a typical list - integrity, confidence, passion and clear, decisive communication. Leaders have a strong focus on results, the ability to develop effective strategies and plans, decisiveness in the face of tough situations, accountability for team performance, and the ability to manage setbacks with calm logic. The list goes on.

The mark of a great leader is the ability to inspire.

Didn't we all have a teacher at school that was so passionate about their subject that they made learning fun? Don't we all have that someone we look up to who designed, created, or did extraordinary things, often beyond the imagination of the norm? What is it about these people that makes them so inspiring?

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"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader." John Quincy Adams

I've spent a lot of time reading about the lives of the great explorers — many people whose own passion has inspired me to chase exhilarating adventures over the years. As a result, I've been on kayaking expeditions like the first descent of the White Nile, sea kayaking to Tasmania from mainland Australia and, attempting to summit Amadablam, to name a few. These experiences have been intrinsic in the development of my leadership skills.

It's not always practical or possible for people to set off on a journey up Everest or embark on an Arctic expedition to develop their leadership skills, but that does not mean that the benefits of experiential learning should be left untapped. With this in mind, about five years ago, I set about to create a learning tool that would effectively develop leadership skills. The result of that labour is Catalyst Global team building and training game, Peak Performance. Peak Performance is a tablet-based interactive business game in which teams take the role of Expedition Leader on a 20 day trip to summit Mount Everest before returning safely to base camp. The game allows participants to experience firsthand the inspiration and drive required to be a great leader.

Passion Drives Want for More Knowledge

Passionate leaders are knowledgeable, offering well-informed opinions and solutions where needed. Their knowledge allows them to consider all angles – every possible alternative and the impact of each, and to facilitate the development of great ideas, inspiring vision and a well-thought-out strategy. Great leaders use this vision and strategy to motivate and guide effective action. In requiring a team to absorb knowledge and apply it in the development of an agile game strategy, Peak Performance does just this.

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Enthusiasm Encourages Communication

Passion and excitement spur people on to communicate with those around them, motivating others to join the cause in the process. What's more, passion and knowledge contribute to a positive attitude and helps grow peoples' confidence – a confidence that is nothing short of contagious. Modelling this, Peak Performance places responsibility on individuals to develop knowledge on a particular aspect of the game and to effectively communicate that knowledge with their team.

Effective Leaders' High Yet Attainable Standards

Inspirational leaders challenge people by setting high yet attainable standards for their team. They lead by providing their team with the training and support necessary to achieve defined goals, and ensuring that their people are well acquainted with clear plans and are well equipped to carry out those plans. Likewise, a leader's trust and belief in their team's capabilities enables them to give those around them the latitude to achieve.

Peak Performance provides knowledge and experience to develop experts across different areas. Bringing it all together, team leaders ensure that those around them to realise their potential and can fulfil intended goals.

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Inspiring Peak Performance as Leaders of Our Domain

When we invest in and leverage our specific areas of passion, interest, and expertise, we enable ourselves to be leaders in our domains. I hope that Peak Performance will leave people with an enhanced realisation of the role they have to play and the inspiration and passion for applying their unique skills and talents to their team.

Guy Baker

Founding Director Catalyst Global

Guy visioned the creation & development of team building concepts and then set about to convince the world of their benefits.

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