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Leadership Development

Pop Quiz: How Do Exemplary Leaders Lead Exemplarily?

Leaders Lead Exemplarily

Orlando Fernandez, Library of Congress

Test Your Knowledge of the Most Practical Model of Leadership Development

Think you're up to speed on the behaviors that make a leader effective? Test your knowledge now . . . 

True or False?

Q: Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner first wrote The Leadership Challenge® based on concepts that came to them while on a backpacking trek in Patagonia.


Truth: Jim Kouzes and Barry Posner based their framework for The Leadership Challenge® on 30 years of research, which they have replicated and evolved since 1987. The research includes more than 3 million (yes, million) leaders worldwide.

Q: The behaviors that The Leadership Challenge® unpacks are based on those maladaptive behaviors the researchers observed over time in the least effective leaders.

False again! (If you answered “True,” you might be thinking of another groundbreaking book, “The Five Dysfunctions of a Team,” which helps you find the root causes of, and solutions for, politics and team dysfunction in the workplace.)

Truth: Conversely, The Leadership Challenge® originated from Kouzes and Posner’s observations of five common behaviors the most effective leaders demonstrate—behaviors they call “practices.”

The Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership® include (pick the correct answer):

Option A

  1. Sacrifice to Win
  2. Communicate with Others
  3. Lead Astutely, Absolutely
  4. Make Meetings Matter
  5. Speak to Persuade

Option B

  1. Model the Way
  2. Inspire a Shared Vision
  3. Challenge the Process
  4. Enable Others to Act
  5. Encourage the Heart

Option C

  1. Give 110%
  2. Work Harder, Not Smarter
  3. Think Outside the Box
  4. No “I” in Team
  5. Failure is Not an Option

If you picked Option B, you are correct. The heart of The Leadership Challenge® research is this: if you want to be a better leader, demonstrate the behaviors more frequently!

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Jeff Pressly

Jeff Pressly is a past FlashPoint employee and lifelong leadership learner.