The earlier in life a child has a positive leadership experience, the more successful they will be when they grow up. Here are a few things we can do as parents to help our children have those positive experiences and learn essential leadership skills early on.
- Foster a growth mindset: According to Dr. Carol Dweck, a growth mindset is essential for learning and becoming the best we can be, whereas a fixed mindset creates fear about learning new things. Encourage a growth mindset by praising your child’s efforts, not his/her traits. For example, say, “I really admire the work that you’ve put into that assignment,” rather than “You are so smart.”
- Effective feedback: Giving feedback is an essential part of life, and a key responsibility of parents and educators.
Why not give feedback using a style that celebrates progress? Try the feedback sandwich:
a. Begin with a positive comment;
b. Suggest what can be done to improve next time, and;
c. Finish with an overall positive comment.
For best results, give feedback within 5 minutes of completing the task.
- Enroll your children in programs that emphasize values: Choose programs and camps that go beyond specific hard skill training and offer your child building blocks to be effective leaders in life. Look for programs that emphasize team-building, communication, organization and problem-solving skills that can be applied in school at home and with peers.