Build Confidence and Competence

It should go without saying that inspirational leaders are encouraging leaders. Inspiration and encouragement go hand in hand, and nothing is more opposite inspiration than discouragement. It is virtually impossible for a person to feel both discouraged and inspired at the same time. So to inspire, a leader must also encourage.

Encouragement boosts morale, motivation, and—most importantly—confidence. Inspirational leaders understand that confidence is just as vital for success as competence. As Andy Core writes, “Self-confidence is one of those intangible traits that encourages an employee to do their work well.” In other words, confidence in themselves and what they’re doing leads to greater competence.

But too often, smart, skilled people lack confidence in their abilities, and as a result fail to reach their full potential. Knowing this, inspirational leaders facilitate the growth of those they lead not only by focusing on developing competence, but also by helping instill confidence.

As Lisa Hill said in an interview for my book, Be An Inspirational Leader, empowering people is about believing in them, challenging them, supporting them, and not micro-managing. Those are the leadership habits that build employees’ confidence.

So make it your goal to excel at encouraging and building the confidence of those you lead. Value and respect each person who reports to you—believe in them, challenge them, support them, and do not micro-manage!

As inspirational leaders, we should understand and take to heart what the poet and philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe once said: “Treat a man as he is and he will remain as he is. Treat a man as he can and should be and he will become as he can and should be.”

Now that is a recipe for greater success!

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I am a leader, speaker, and author who is passionate about Leadership Excellence and Achieiving Greater Success. I am the author of the books Be An Inspirational Leader(2016) and Presidential Leadership (2013), and deliver keynote presentations on those topics and several others.

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“Dan Nielsen is a gifted facilitator and inspiring presenter. He truly has a passion for leadership and for getting to the heart of the matter. He knows what it takes to motivate both individuals and groups and genuinely leads by the example he sets.”

Sharla K JonesVP, HR Learning & Development Manager, PlainsCapital Bank


“Dan is the ultimate professional. He has exceptional relationship development and group facilitation skills. He is a keen observer and is able to offer accurate insights into business relationships.”

- Brenda Moon, Vice President Client Executive, MedAssets


“Dan is a forward thinking leader who is optimistic, collaborative and open to change. He is trusted and respected by colleagues. His speaking style is enthusiastic, confident and engaging. You know that a successful outcome will be delivered when Dan is leading the way.”

- Rick Provencher, Director Member Solutions, Amerinet


“Dan is a great communicator and inspirational speaker. His message is positive and always very motivating. I recommend Dan to help any organization optimize their employees' potential.”

- John Penhollow, Director of Corporate Accounts, Medical Action Industriesi


“Dan is a gifted leader who has the extraordinary ability to develop a strategic vision and mobilize an organization to achieve it. He operates with great integrity and character. Dan completely understands business dynamics and utilizes that understanding to optimize exceptional leadership.”

- Stacy Shillan, IV Infusion & Respiratory Services, Walgreens


“Dan has a passion for leadership and for providing the tools for others to become effective, insightful leaders.”

- Linda DeWolf, Founder, Travel Well


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