10. Competence and Confidence – Symbiotic Leadership Relationship

SymbiosisCompetence and Confidence a symbiotic leadership relationship

Critical elements to good leadership are confidence and competence. Confidence is easily discerned by those who follow. Employees will more willingly conform to their leaders influence when those leaders present a confident attitude about their business. A leader’s confidence is infectious.

With a confident leader and confident staff, their mutual endeavors stand a better chance of achieving success because the ‘rank and file’ are more inclined to work in accord.

People can immediately tell when a leader lacks confidence in themselves or the mutual endeavor the team is to undertake. If the leader cannot exude confidence about themselves, the team’s abilities or the worthiness of their shared focus, the team is on rocky, unsteady ground.

So, how does a leader exude confidence: by being competent! A leader that’s properly prepared themselves for the challenge ahead and has a clear understanding of the critical path for success will be more favorably supported by the team (employees).


To prepare oneself, a leader should develop and refine their mastery over the skill sets necessary to accomplish the burdens and challenges that lay ahead. A competent leader should able to:

  • think critically
  • communicate effectively
  • effectively prioritize
  • organize and manage effort
  • possess a deep understanding of their strengths and weakness

To prepare for the mutual task, a leader must have a firm grasp on the desired end-state and a clear and achievable ‘way-ahead’ towards its accomplishment. A leader can accomplish this by developing a firm understanding of:

  • the risks, rewards, and shortcomings of the ‘way ahead’ plan
  • the capabilities and shortcomings of the team
  • the resources available to accomplish the tasks ahead (money, people, time, materials)

When a leader effectively develops their skill sets and masters their understanding of the path ahead, they then will be a competent leader. If they are competent, confidence will be evident.  If you are a leader and you exude confidence, others will follow you.


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