Leadership is and always will be an uphill battle. When leading, how do you make a real difference in people's lives? Leadership is more than coaching; it is more like being a teacher. Teaching is a lifelong pursuit, and leadership should be the same.

Teachers enable their students to see beyond themselves and give them greater understanding of what can be accomplished. Leaders can be just like teachers, helping their mentees go above and beyond.

Here are some tips to becoming a leader who is more of a teacher than a coach.


This will probably be your most important asset as a leader. You must be able to listen to those you are teaching. It should about them and not about you. Through proper communication, you will be able to lay out a foundation in order to be the most helpful.

Additionally, asking the right questions is even more important. According to leadership expert, John Maxwell, "Questions are the most effective means of connecting with people."


Connecting with others is the best way to build a relationship. The questions you ask your mentees will help them think through issues they want to address.

Not only what you ask is important, but also how you ask. Relationships take work, and both you and those you are teaching must be willing to do work necessary to achieve the intended results.


It is not enough just to sit and talk; there should be a defined strategy and achievable goals. Teachers have a lesson plan, and you should also define a plan that will work best for the mentee.

Goals should be kept simple and have a metric, such as a course to be accomplished and a certificate to be earned. These goals can be both short and long term. The goals should be desired and well within the employee's ability. Too often, goals are so lofty that they ultimately are unattainable.


Everyone is valuable to an organization. As a leader, you should be able to instill in your employees what value they bring to the table. Teachers help their students shine by highlighting their accomplishments. Growing the people you are coaching with different assignments will help them achieve more, and will be of better value to both themselves and the organization.

Leadership is a lifelong commitment. Just as teachers empower their students to better themselves, you can be a force to help your employees achieve greatness.