Episode 49

Published on:

30th Sep 2021

The Big Deal about a Leader's Inner Circle

The big deal about inner circles:

Question One: What’s the big deal about inner circles?

Potential characteristics when a leader doesn’t have that inner circle:

  • Loneliness, feeling isolated and discouraged
  • A sense of carrying the bulk of the load in decision making
  • Increasing cynicism
  • Becoming more distrustful and unable to clearly identify a safe space for deep dialogue

Inner circles are made up of those whose character and dreams bring value to others rather than seeking to take from the group.

Who we choose to invite into our inner circle is critical for our leadership journey

Absence of an inner circle can be deal breaking for a leader looking to expand their horizons.

Question Two: Does a leader have control on who is in their inner circle?

Yes, it is the leader who must take the initiative to develop their experience of the inner circle.

Two steps to get started on building your inner group:

Step one:  Take time to think carefully and strategically about who you are looking for to engage in your

inner circle.

Step two: Be intentional in building meaningful relationships

Tip#1 :  don’t be in a hurry but when you see the potential for an inner circle member, go for it. 

Tip #2: Don’t buy into the myth that leaders are too busy to build meaningful relationships

Potential characteristics of leaders who connect within an inner circle:

1.   Character and integrity and mutual respect

2.   An ability to create a paradigm shift in those around them

a.   Not agreeing with everything to move on quickly and avoid deeper dialogue

b. Able to shift the direction of the conversation

3.   Willingness to travel the journey (both the good and bad)

4.   Readiness for fun

5.Competence with a track record of success

6.  Those who have a Purpose in life that makes a difference

Inner circles are effective if they are small in number but massive in value.


The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership

EconomyFromWalden.pdf (simplicitycollective.com)

“Joy is a decision, a really brave one, about how you are going to respond to life.” —Wess Stafford | PassItOn.com

tdjakes quotes inner circle - Bing images

Show artwork for The Art of Leadership

About the Podcast

The Art of Leadership
The Art of Leadership focuses on soft skills... some of the hardest skills a leader will ever learn.
The Art of Leadership with Dr. Niña Ellison focuses on the soft skills of leadership, their value and the power of their influence. As a leader, if you are interested in moving from success to significance then balancing both hard and soft skills is essential!

Hard skills are demonstrated through technical expertise that results in clearly measured goals being reached. They are vital to the success of any initiative or program. On the other hand, soft skills emphasize the transformation of people. They highlight behavioral changes and making a difference in people’s lives.

This podcast is for leaders who are seeking a fresh perspective into some of the hardest soft skills a leader will ever learn. You can connect with Niña at https://www.ninaellison.com

About your host

Profile picture for Niña Ellison

Niña Ellison

In 2019, after years of leading teams varying from international disaster relief and healthcare to the US Corporate world, Niña founded Healthy Leadership to focus on her passion for partnering with leaders in their growth and sustainability. Her own journey into soft skill development has convinced her that while her technical skills helped her get her foot in the door, her soft skills moved the influence of her leadership from success to significance.

As a soft skill specialist Niña takes monthly deep dives in her podcast series, The Art of Leadership, to explore the underlying dimensions of soft skills. She knows that soft skill development is not so much about WHAT but HOW a leader leads.
• From a 10,000 foot view a leader pursuing soft skills asks, “How do I problem solve; How do I manage time and energy?”
• From a 1,000-foot view that same leader, as they dig deeper into soft skills, begins asking questions like, “How do I listen; or How do gain self-control?”
• From Ground Zero the leader recognizes that there are underlying dimensions of soft skills as they ask, “How do I model respect for all; How do I sustain hope; How do I demonstrate appropriate love in the workplace; How do I maintain the right attitude?” How do I lead by serving?

Nina believes that behind every wildly effective and sustainable system and process are leaders and teams who have interwoven soft skills into every phase of their work.