Most Overlooked Leadership Skill

Even before I released the disc, I knew it was a long shot. Unfortunately, it was a clumsy one too. We were playing Ultimate Frisbee and we were tied 14-14. The next point would win the game. I watched the disc fly over the heads of both teams. Everyone but me ran down the field. I cringed, helplessly, as the disc wobbled, still, I had hoped it could go our way. However, my friend Jeff was on our team and he was an Ultimate Frisbee superstar. Jeff broke free from the other runners and bolted to the end zone. But the disc was too far ahead of him, he would never make it. At the very last moment, he made the leap of all leaps and snagged it in the air. Jeff was completely horizontal with the ground and his arms outstretched. The field was silent as he slid across the end zone, shrouded in a cloud of dust. A second later he rose, Frisbee in hand. Our team erupted in cheer. Jeff’s catch won us the game. His great receiving ability got the win for us and made me look good – very good.

The game also taught me a great lesson: Never underestimate the value of a talented receiver. This is a very important and practical lesson a great receiver can be a huge asset to a team. Being a great receiver is important it’s vital to be a great listener in a team environment for the groups success.

Typically, we choose our leaders for their skill at conveying messages clearly and powerfully. But, in my experience, it’s their ability to receive messages – to listen to your team, that distinguishes the best leaders from the rest. That’s because the better you are at receiving, the more likely people will talk to you. And that’s precisely what every one of us needs: to be surrounded by people who are willing to speak the unspoken. This is why receiving is the:

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