There are hundreds of inspiring quotes—“Leaders aren’t born, they are made” (Vince Lombardi, among others), and books and blog postings about developing your leadership skills. They offer useful advice and thought provoking ideas for leaders to consider. This food for thought is useful but only goes so far.
Leadership has to go from your head (what should I do?), to your heart (why should I do it?), to your words and actions (what people see). Leadership is an interactive dynamic—requiring you to think on your feet, react in the moment, and work with and through people. The only way to cultivate your leadership is to practice. Ultimately the best way to build leadership skills is through experience—through trial and feedback and failure and success.