How to Lead Like a Superhero

September 29, 2017

What do sales leaders and superheroes have in common? We've developed a list of 10 characteristics that they share in a cool new infographic so that you can sharpen your superhero skills too! Enjoy!

Have a Purpose and a Vision
Captain America, for example, is very clear on what he needs to do and accomplish. He understands that his purpose is to right wrongs, fight for justice, and complete virtually impossible missions. Knowing this, Captain America is able to create a strategy that accomplishes the mission and execute the necessary tactics to accomplish that strategy. As a leader, you must have an explicit purpose and vision for yourself, your team, and your mission.

Click For Superhero Infographic!

Be Willing to Both Lead and Follow
Superheroes might have an ego but will adopt a position of humility to advance the mission. They leverage the strengths of everyone on their team to accomplish the goal, allowing others to lead when their talents are stronger. Superheroes lead from the front, never asking anyone on their team to do something he or she wouldn't do himself.

Let Every Team Member Shine
As leader of the Avengers, Captain America is surrounded by the world’s most powerful superheroes. He understands their strengths and leverages them to best accomplish the mission. He lets each team member have a chance in the spotlight and willingly embraces team members’ ideas. Every superhero on the team has a unique skill that he can't match, and that's OK.

Focus on Things with the Biggest Impact
Captain America has a laser focus on the important things that create the biggest difference. He doesn’t allow himself to be dragged into the small details that won’t make a major difference. Don't get so wrapped up in details that you miss the big picture.

Be a Risk Taker, but Not Reckless
The job of a superhero, as well as a leader, is inherently risky. The Avengers understand the risks and trust Captain America not to put them in harm’s way unnecessarily. This inspires loyalty among his team. While your circumstances are not nearly as perilous, you may need to take risks to achieve your mission.

Don’t Be Afraid to Break the Rules
When rules that were created with the best intentions yield unfortunate outcomes, leaders need to trust that their judgment and experience will help them make the right call. Many rules are made by people far away from the front line. While there may be a price to pay for breaking rules, leaders need to weigh the options and consider what's best overall.

Share the Credit
Captain America isn't in it to advance himself. By sharing the credit, he gains the admiration and respect of his team; his team is willing to follow him into battle. Effective leaders recognize the contributions of their team members – and even their superiors – who helped make the mission a success. Building the currency of others doesn't hurt yours.

Communicate Clearly and Openly
Captain America is very clear on what he needs to do and accomplish. He understands Captain America is clear about his objectives and ensures his team understands what is required. He praises openly and has the tough conversations privately. Instead of avoiding constructive conflict, he speaks up if he believes there is a better way to accomplish the mission. Captain America repeatedly communicates the necessity of actions and reviews the tactics with his team to ensure everyone understands his or her role and is focused on execution.

Admit When You are Wrong
Captain America takes responsibility for his actions and readily admits when he’s wrong. He doesn’t worry about losing respect or being seen as weak. When he makes a mistake, he owns it and acknowledges that he must consider other actions. Don’t let being right stop you from moving on productively.

Be Resilient
Captain America gets back up when he's knocked down and never quits. He may get discouraged, but he is persistent and adaptable in order to find a way to win. He understands that intelligent actions, patience, and persistence are worth the effort.

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