Bahadur Singh Salem Oregon, LeadershipLeadership can mean many things to many people. Leadership is classically defined as the office or position of a leader or the act or an instance of leading. However, distinguished individuals, teams, and organizations don’t lean on standard characterizations to determine what they believe a leader should be; instead, they’ve found their take on what it means to lead well and lead wisely. Personalized philosophies have helped to guide our understanding of what qualities are needed to innovate, direct, and correct.

Eleanor Roosevelt once stated, “To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” Also, William Arthur Ward said, “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” Both, Eleanor Roosevelt and William Arthur Ward are right, as well others who correctly identify focus, confidence, and integrity as important traits. The power or ability to lead others is exceptional, especially when looking to advance a team.

Read on to learn the other ways business-minded CEOs and founders define leadership:

“Effective leadership is providing the vision and motivation to a team so they work together toward the same goal, and then understanding the talents and temperaments of each individual and effectively motivating each person to contribute individually their best toward achieving the group goal.” – Stan Kimer, president, Total Engagement Consulting by Kimer

“Leadership is having the humility to put your employees first so that the company can grow. Leaders should invest time [in] employees and make sure that they feel comfortable in the workplace. This increases the functionality and efficiency of the company.” – Matthew Adams, director of communications, Tru-Colour Bandages

“Effective leadership is providing the vision and motivation to a team so they work together toward the same goal, and then understanding the talents and temperaments of each individual and effectively motivating each person to contribute individually their best toward achieving the group goal.” – Stan Kimer, president, Total Engagement Consulting by Kimer

“Too many people view management as leadership. It’s not. Leadership comes from influence, and influence can come from anyone at any level and in any role. Being open and authentic, helping to lift others up and working toward a common mission, build influence. True leadership comes when those around you are influenced by your life in a positive way.” – Kurt Uhlir, CEO and co-founder, Sideqik

“For me, leadership is an act — a decision to take a stand, or step, in order to encourage, inspire or motivate others to move with you. What’s more, the most effective leaders do not rely on their title, or positional power, to lead. Rather, their ability to use their own personal power combined with their use of strategic influence are what make them effective.” – Kendra Coleman, consultant, Sheppard Moscow

“It’s true that imitation is one of the greatest forms of flattery, but not when it comes to leadership—and every great leader in my life, from Mike Tomlin to Olympic ski coach Scott Rawles, led from a place of authenticity. Learn from others, read autobiographies of your favorite leaders, pick up skills along the way… but never lose your authentic voice, opinions and, ultimately, how you make decisions.” —Jeremy Bloom, co-founder, and CEO, Integrate

“One of the biggest myths is that good business leaders are great visionaries with dogged determination to stick to their goals no matter what. It’s nonsense. The truth is, leaders need to keep an open mind while being flexible and adjust if necessary. When in the startup phase of a company, planning is highly overrated and goals are not static. Your commitment should be to invest, develop and maintain great relationships.” —Daymond John, CEO, Shark Branding and FUBU

“It takes insight every day to be able to separate that which is really important from all the incoming fire. It’s like wisdom—it can be improved with time, if you’re paying attention, but it has to exist in your character. It’s inherent. When your insight is right, you look like a genius. And when your insight is wrong, you look like an idiot.” —Raj Bhakta, founder, WhistlePig Whiskey

Leadership is the ability to fill in the gaps, it is capacity to manage and guide a team or group while instilling the importance of accountability, performance, and communication. Being talented and working with talented individuals is never enough. Beyond that, both you and your team have to have a mindset that’s focused on persistence and intentions, and a willingness to boost one another to achieve even the loftiest of goals.