Focus on developing you skills and knowledge and you will more than likely limit how far you climb the leadership ladder.
When we start in our career, most of our energies and efforts are directed to learning. For example:
How to use IT
Gaining a broad range of experience
Gaining knowledge through professional or business qualifications
These foundations are an essential part of your development but they are unlikely to be a major factor in determining how far you climb the leadership ladder. So what attributes do you need to develop to avoid hitting a glass ceiling?
Awareness of yourself and how your behaviours impact on others
Clarity on where you excel and where you are less effective
The confidence in your own abilities so that you are sufficiently resolute and can bounce back when things are not going so well
Flexibility and adaptability so that you are ready to seize opportunities
The personal drive to get results in both the good and not so good times
The ability to understand and take on board different perspectives. For example, the marketing specialist perspective on an issue will be different to the finance or HR specialist perspective and none of them will be wrong.
The desire to provide outstanding levels of service, no matter what you do, even if it is not directly interfacing with external customers
Create and get buy-in to your compelling vision for the business or your part of the business
A willingness to develop and leverage relationships to get the best outcomes
Contribution that serves your interests and those of the key stakeholders in the business
So where do you need to start developing to keep climbing the leadership ladder?