Empowering Young Minds: 5 Ways to Encourage Leadership Skills in Children

Exploring the Vital Importance of Leadership Skills for Students

Building leadership skills in some way, shape or form, is an important part of character-building for all growing students. For children across different age groups, learning to lead is rooted in the gradual development of their self-confidence, drive to take initiative, and sense of responsibility. These are all characteristics that contribute significantly to their overall personal growth.

But when it comes to taking the lead in social or teamwork situations, there is no one-size-fits-all approach that all children should be working towards. Whether your child is a natural leader or prefers to allow others to take the reins, there are many kinds of leadership traits that they can be guided into developing, depending on their personality types, their level of introversion/extroversion, and their preferred work methods. Expanded below are a few character traits and habits that you can inculcate in your child, to bring out their optimal leadership skills.

1. Teamwork and Responsibility:

The first step to learning to lead others is being willing to take responsibility—not just for your own work, which all children must be willing to do, but for work that they do collectively, in a group setting. 

👉Personal Responsibility

Before your child can become a responsible team worker and leader, they must have the foundational habit of taking responsibility for their own work. Building this habit can begin at a young age; it is always a good idea to encourage your child to be disciplined in ensuring the quality, correctness and timeliness of their homework and other projects. This promotes a sense of personal responsibility that is necessary for the success of their individual pursuits, as well as any further teamwork they engage in. It is impossible for your child to be a good team leader without being self-disciplined about their own individual work!

👉Leading Peers

Once your child has a strong sense of personal responsibility for their own schoolwork, they are already on their way to becoming exemplary leaders to their peers. Being particular about showing competence and delivering high-quality work, even as early as primary school, will give your child the skills they need to keep team members in check in group settings. They will be able to guide their peers into making sure that their group work is well done, and keep them accountable for the quality of their individual contributions.

2. Problem-Solving:

The development of leadership skills in children begins and is furthered when they are encouraged to take initiative and be problem solvers. This starts in the home; there are several different things you could get your child to do, to foster in them a habit of taking initiative. You could ask them to take up certain household tasks, or involve them in any of the day-to-day issues that you tackle as an adult, to expose them to real-life problem solving and get them used to thinking through tasks and issues to find solutions.

3. Communication:

Another integral element of being a leader is having well-developed communication skills. In a group setting, it is essential for budding leaders to learn that communication always has to go two ways—a leader must be able to communicate their ideas clearly, while also giving their fellow team members equal opportunities and spaces to express their own ideas and feedback. Finding this happy medium is key in order for your child to avoid being either an overly bossy leader, or a silent and non-contributing member of the groups they become part of in school, as well as later during their further studies and working lives.

4. Decision-Making:

👉Decisions and Accountability

Part of being a leader is having the willingness and the ability to make decisions for the team. This involves not only having the competence to judge between good and bad decisions regarding how to go about group-based schoolwork, but also being willing to take accountability for their decisions, especially if they end up with unexpected results. Making mistakes is an essential part of learning, and good leaders must be willing to take responsibility for any mistakes they may make!

👉Balancing Decisions in Group Settings

Decision-making must be as democratic as possible when work is done as a group; this is another important aspect of leadership that your child should learn during their leadership experiences in school. If there is a decision to be made regarding group work, your child, as a group leader, must be willing to take any team members’ opposing views into consideration, and make decisions based on everybody’s ideas, not only their own. This method of leadership is appropriate in educational settings, and ensures that if there are decisions taken that do not end very well, the responsibility can be shared across all members of the group as a whole, as opposed to simply the leader. This sort of democratic leadership helps your child to cooperate with members of their groups, and allows all the involved students to collectively learn from their mistakes.

5. Confidence and Taking Opportunities:

The jump from gaining the necessary skills to lead a group, to actually stepping up to take leadership, requires a healthy dose of self-confidence. For more introverted children, this might be a difficult step. Encouraging them to start small and take up positions of leadership and responsibility at home, in school and in extracurricular spaces, can help them gradually get used to taking the lead.

Different children are equipped to take leadership positions associated with certain types of activities, while allowing their peers to lead in other types of activities, based on their interests and strengths. Encouraging your child to take the lead in spaces where they feel most comfortable, confident and well-equipped, is a good way to help them build the leadership skills relevant to them.


Leadership skills play a vital role in the development of students, empowering them to become capable and influential individuals. By implementing these 5 key strategies to encourage leadership skills in children, we can pave the way for their success and nurture young minds that have the potential to make a positive impact on the world.


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