Coaching Works, Inc. transparent.gif (35 bytes)

Business Coaching

Executive Coaching

transparent.gif (807 bytes)

transparent.gif (35 bytes)


transparent.gif (807 bytes)Coaching Works, Inc. - Menu

transparent.gif (807 bytes)

The Language of Leadership

by Sterling Van De Moortel

World-class leaders stand out because of who they are as well as what they do.  They embody, demonstrate and evoke the qualities that Kathleen Spike recently portrayed:  vision, purpose, values, confidence, authenticity, integrity, ommitment, inspiration, results, truth, trust, compassion and choice.

In addition, and possibly above all else, consummate leaders distinguish themselves by HOW they do so.  They apply the power of intentionality.   They CONSCIOUSLY COMMUNICATE these qualities in their lives and their environments.   Through their actions and their very way of being, they intentionally model what they want to call forth in those they lead.  For example, they not only ACT in a visionary and purposeful way; they actually EMANATE a sense of vision and purpose as well.   Think of Gandhi or Churchill or the CEOs of Hewlett Packard and other cutting-edge companies. 

Skilled leaders know that they convey these qualities largely through HOW they language themselves. They avoid taking language for granted.  They recognize and use the creative and transformative powers of their language behavior.   (Yes, Virginia: language IS a form of behavior!) 

They seize opportunities to create what they desire through their language.

So let's look at how skilled leaders consciously communicate the three Cs from the list above:  Clarity, Compassion and Choice. 


Consummate conscious communicators language themselves accurately, specifically, and distinctly, avoiding assumptions.  Here's how some unconscious language patterns can be reformulated more consciously. 

I'm here to serve the company.

     circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) I'm here to assure that each employee gets the support s/he needs to contribute full-out to reaching the company's goals.                               

Everyone needs to perform full out. 

      circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) How can you each contribute your very best?

Yeah, we're kind of shy of our goal. 

      circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) We're 17% short of our goal of $1.5 million.   

We all know what to do to succeed.

      circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) What will it take for us to succeed?


Consummate conscious communicators language themselves in a way that highlights choice.  Here are some conscious reformulations. 

How should you address this?        

       circledarrow.gif (881 bytes)  How do you choose to address this?

Everyone has to support this goal. 

       circledarrow.gif (881 bytes)  What would serve the company best?

We need to contain the damage.   

        circledarrow.gif (881 bytes)  How do we intend to do what's right?


Consummate conscious communicators language themselves so as to demonstrate or evoke compassion ("sympathetic consciousness").

Just do it!                

         circledarrow.gif (881 bytes)  Are you willing to do it?

        circledarrow.gif (881 bytes)  How can I facilitate this for you?

No excuses!                

         circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) What will it take to do it?

What's wrong with this picture?       

         circledarrow.gif (881 bytes) How can we all win on this?


The next time you have an opportunity to show leadership, pause to clarify your intention before proceeding.  (What outcome do you intend?)  Then embody that intention.  Demonstrate it through your actions ... and through your conscious choice of language.  Let me know how you experience it.

PS  In case you hadn't noted, most of the suggested rephrasings are in question form.  Why do you suppose that is? 

Sterling Van De Moortel
Express Success:  Language Your Life

Sterling champions professionals, business people and individuals to express themselves authentically and vibrantly in all aspects of their lives ... to transform their lives through empowering language ... to become who they say they are.   His motto: "The best way to predict the future is to create it." 


To learn more about Sterling Van De Moortel, click here.

Sterling Van De Moortel and Coaching Works, Inc. 2000 

Back ] Home ] Up ]

Coaching Works, Inc. - Menu

Coaching Works!TAKE CHARGE! - Subscribe to our weekly newsletter.

Coaching Works!Articles - A variety of useful information to serve your personal and professional needs.

Coaching Works!Home

Coaching Works!Telecourses

Coaching Works!Ebooks

Coaching Works!Coaching Services








transparent.gif (35 bytes) transparent.gif (35 bytes) transparent.gif (35 bytes)
transparent.gif (35 bytes)

Coaching Works, Inc. |
PO Box 69264 - Portland, OR 97239 | 503-417-1895

transparent.gif (35 bytes)
Coaching Works, Inc.

Coaching Works, Inc. 1998, 1999, 2000

Coaching Works, Inc.