Archives For youth leadership

karin caring 41 300x300 Inspiring Servant Leadership in KidsSimon says, following the leader, being line leader at school… many of the messages we share about leadership are simple … “I’ll tell you what to do, and you do it.”  And if we’re feeling particularly cranky, “because mommy (or daddy) says so, that’s why” may even slip through our lips.

Hardly examples of servant leadership.

We must teach our children early and often about REAL leadership.  They must see that servant leadership requires serving, transparency, building up, and helping others to grow.

In Search of Kid’s Servant Leadership Stories

I’m looking to talk to children and youth serving as servant leaders across countries and contexts.  I’m equally interested in hearing from grown-ups dedicated to inspiring servant leadership in children and youth.

The tricky part is servant leaders are humble, and may not want to toot their own horn. This is about spreading the word of possibilities and techniques.  Bring on the confident humility that will change the world.

Please contact me at to share your stories.

Thanks for helping us grow the next generation of servant leaders.

A Few Early LGL Posts on Kid’s Leadership

The Best Way to Teach Your Kids About Leadership

Children’s Books on Leadership:  Questions to Inspire Young Thinking

Leadership from a Kid’s Point of View: Lucky or Skillful (from my son, Sebastian, at age 7)

Today I present our final post in this year’s Leadership Padawan Saturday series, Growing Leadership in Kids.  On Monday, I return to our normal leadership fare.

Today I offer a guest post from Eric Dingler, a great example of a Thermostat leader.

Eric has been the Director and lead communicator for an expanding Christian summer camp and year-round conference center for over 10 years.  He lives on the camp in Ohio with his wife Marissa and their two children, Rilee and Ryan.  You can follow Eric at or on his blog launching January 4th 2013 at

iStock 000003620506XSmall 300x199 Thermostat or Thermometer?  Helping Kids Feel the Leadership ClimateOver 16 years of teaching leadership to kids, here are four truths I’ve discovered.  With these truths, we can teach our kids leadership skills for life. Continue Reading…

How do we make the invisible, visible for our children?  The next in our Saturday Series in developing leadership in kids.  On Monday we return to our regular leadership fare.

A Guest Post from Sonia Di Maulo, Canada

appleinorchard1 224x300 Making the Invisible, Visible For Our ChildrenVision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.Jonathan Swift 

Samuel picks up the slightest change in his environment. He senses that his mom needs a hug.  And of course, mom is grateful. Later that afternoon, he deliberately annoys his little brother, and a mini-war ensues.

Samuel makes choices every day. At ten years old, sometimes he chooses well.  What is it about his environment that leads him towards his choices? Continue Reading…

LeadershipPost2 232x300 Kids Books on Leadership For the Older Crowd: Insights from India

Thanks for joining in for our continued Saturday series on developing leadership in kids. Today’s post builds on the exploration of Children’s Books on Leadership.

On Monday, we return to our normal leadership fare.

A guest post from Sandhya Varadharajan,

Age 13, Chennai, India

I connected with Sandhya through social media from our shared connections and interest in books, writing and blogging.  She is an avid reader who blogs about the books she reads. She has an inspiring process worth exploring with your kids.  More info can be found on her links at the end of this post.

I challenged her to share her teachable point of view on leadership and the books that help to reinforce. I am delighted to publish her insights. Continue Reading…

suninhands2 100x150 Saturday Salutation: Postcard from the United Nations Youth Assembly

This is a guest post from my son Ben Evans, 17.  Ben is a youth envoy to the Unitarian Universalist United Nations Organization, and recently served as a delegate to the National Youth Assembly at the United Nations.  He holds a variety of leadership roles at school and church, and enjoys music and drama.

“Youth are problem solvers, not problems to be solved.”

-Jasmine Nahhas di Flori

This quote set the tone for the 11th Annual Youth Assembly at the United Nations sponsored by the Friendship Ambassadors Foundation, which I attended this week.  The focus was on youth empowerment, and how social networking can be used to create change.

All of the panel speakers are fantastic leaders with truly amazing stories.  Some were ambassadors from countries like Romania and Kenya. I also met Jacuqes Cousteau’s grandson and teens my age who have made big changes by starting something small.  For example, Talia Leman began a trick or treating campaign when she was 10 years old, and has now raised over 10 million dollars for relief efforts around the world. Continue Reading…

Growing Leaders of All Ages:
Part of my mission for this blog is engaging leaders of all ages in the leadership conversation.  Today, I present a guest post from Jared Herr, age 12.  If you are a leader of any age, interested in collaborating on a guest post on leadership, let’s talk more.

dreamstime xs 22242614 240x300 Kermit the Frog as Leader? Its Not Easy Leading Green

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Kermit is a strong leader in many ways:

  • He works to make the muppets the best that they can be
  • He is inspiring because he always tries his hardest
  • He brings misfit animals together and makes them a team
  • He always has a plan
  • He is a collaborative decision maker 
  • He is self-reflective 
What are Kermit’s leadership challenges?
  • He takes things too personally
  • He has trouble giving tough feedback
  • He needs more work-life balance

Jared’s advice to Kermie…

You are a caring amphibian and always try to make others the best they can be. You put the muppets in roles where you know the can succeed.  You are a role model of hard work, and get all of those crazy animals pulling together as a team.  You inspire them to care about one another.

Kermit, one of your greatest strengths as a leader, self-reflection, is also your challenge.  You may want to check out Karin’s post (is strength your weakness).  For example,  you will double and triple check yourself to make sure every muppet is in a part of the show. But when things go wrong, you take it out on yourself. You always point out things you messed up with or things you should have done. I think you feel a lot of pressure being a leader.

I wish you could have more confidence in your decisions.  Once when you fired Miss Piggy (she deserved it), you ended up face down on the floor (of course, that may have something to do with dysfunctional love, but that’s another post).

You are so nice.  I worry sometimes you have trouble confronting or giving the tough coaching messages.  You always lead to victory in the end.  You might save some time if you could give more direct coaching along the way.

Kermit, you sure seem to face a lot of pressure as leader of the muppets.

I worry that you feel like as their leader, you need to be with them 24/7, and you don’t get much personal time.

All said, it is not easy leading green.  And you have a nice track record of results.  Keep up the great work.  I know you will continue to grow into an amazing leader.

Check out some of Karin’s other posts that may help:

is strength your weakness
one person at a time
where there is chaos seize control

Jared Herr is 12 years old and a rising 7th grader. He likes to play basketball, swim, and act. He is a big fan of the muppets. For the seventh consecutive year, he is taking part in Alex’s Lemonade Stand, a charity that helps find a cure to pediatric  cancer. Together, he and his friend have raised over 25,000 dollars for cancer research.