According to The Mind of the CEO, Yale professor Jeffrey Garten found that having an “optimistic spirit” was a commonality among the world’s top 40 business executives. Radiating a positive mindset doesn’t require special training or a degree. It comes from within. It’s positive leadership that empowers individuals and carries a team to the finish line.

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Reflect on how to be cautiously optimistic

Learning how to be cautiously optimistic is fundamental in developing and honing your leadership skills. Start by simply taking a moment to reflect.

What makes an optimist, optimistic?

Exercises to help you be cautiously optimistic

Now, it's time to put your reflection into action. Finding opportunities to implement your leadership skills can allow you to be cautiously optimistic.

  • Express words of encouragement throughout the week. Consider: “I loved the way you organized your presentation!” or “Great callout during today’s meeting!”
  • Connect with a teammate who's struggling with their confidence. Set up a 30-minute meeting once a week and help them strategize ways to be more positive and upbeat.
  • Ask probing questions the next time something doesn’t work out for your team. Consider: “What did you learn from this experiment?” or "How would you do this differently next time?”

Additional resources to help you be cautiously optimistic

How To Sound Like An Optimist No Matter What (And Why You Should)
No one finds a downer inspiring.
Great Leaders Are Positively Infectious
Like the common cold, emotions are literally contagious. You can “catch” an emotion just by being in the same room with someone. Emotional contagion is primarily a nonverbal process. Since emotional leads tend to flow from the most powerful person in a group to the others, when the leader is angry o…
What Leading with Optimism Really Looks Like
It’s especially important in the face of unprecedented uncertainty.

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