Learning Leadership From an 8th Grader 

Earlier this week, I attended my daughter’s induction ceremony for the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS). This ceremony honors the middle school students for their achievement in scholarship, leadership, and service. To become a member, students must have outstanding acamdemic achievement, demonstrate leadership qualities, and write an essay about a time they helped or lead others. 

In the program, a couple of excerpts of some of the student’s essays were published. As I was reading through them, on particular excerpt from an 8th grader caught my eye. 

Here is a bit of it:

I have learned what it means to be a good leader. I have to be responsible because I don’t want to lose track of any checks or cash. I also have to be respectful and obey the people in higher positions than I have. I have to take other people’s thoughts and ideas into account and I also have to teach. New people join the club every season, and we leaders have to make sure they feel welcome and show them what it means to be a 4Her. 

This girl gets it. It sums up everything you need to know about being a great leader and this is one of the best descriptions I’ve read in a long time. 

  • Be responsible
  • Learn from others around and above you
  • Teach others
  • Be welcoming and serve others 

To learn about great leadership, you can read all of the HBR and Inc. articles or sink your money into leadership seminars. Or you can look to your middle schoolers to find some inspiration. 

Have a great weekend. 


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