In business and in life, highly effective people are not hard to recognize. They are marked by the ability to seize their potential and to release potential in those around them. They inspire people to give their all, not because they have to, because they want to.

For millennia, leadership has been a topic that fuels our imaginations, and sometimes, torments our life energy. Why is leadership such a popular topic? Are we not experiencing enough great leadership? Do we want to be more effective leaders ourselves? Perhaps it is simply that great leaders inspire us—so we want more?

We often focus on what great leaders do—their traits and behaviours—without asking why they lead as they do. For example, if our primary focus is driving results, people might feel as though they are simply tools for delivering our goals. When our primary focus is supporting people in delivering extraordinary results, people are more likely to believe that both results AND their needs are important—feeling pride in performing at their personal best.

As leaders, our lives are busy, demanding and full of ambiguity. There are hundreds of books and competency models describing great leaders—well-intended and sometimes difficult to remember. Consider this powerful and easy-to-remember alternative... creating the conditions for others to excel... know, able, equipped and want.