✏ The Intersection of Skill and Will

“The will must be stronger than the skill.”
– Muhammad Ali

Within successful business paradigms lie vast resources for leaders to assess employees. There are simple ratings based tools, objectives-based evaluations, and the 360° approach, just to name a few. We then jump into specific performance systems that all are “scientifically” proven to be effective.

Let’s focus on one – the Skill vs. Will Matrix. I call it the “Intersection of Skill vs. Will” because those four quadrants that seem so simple to use can become extremely frustrating to manage and assess performance, motivation and skill. And just where does leadership enter the equation? By taking an objective approach to studying the situation, and including yourself as a part of the evaluation.


When we talk about WILL, we are basically looking at the attitude of person and the positive motivation around the achievement of an objective.  The difference between having a strong will vs. a weak will in most cases is centered around both willpower and self-discipline.

You must have the will to succeed. However, it will require a perseverance to relentlessly hone your craft, or in this case, your skill. As a leader, when evaluating your team, you must have a firm understanding of this concept if you want to provide both a fair and balanced assessment, as well as a collaborative work environment.


What about SKILL? For this one, simply think about the technical ability to execute the functions of the objective. It is going to include traits such as experience, training, knowledge and natural talents. As an example, when we talk about a “skilled laborer”, we know that they excel within a defined skill set.


Combine the two – SKILL and WILL – and you will find a true litmus test for leaders trying to develop an effective team while evaluating autonomy, guidance, authority, direction and goals. I don’t want to get scientific or elaborate too much, but the issue you face is how can you, as a leader, ensure that there is an adequate amount of:

  • Training
  • Education
  • Positive attitude
  • Attention to detail
  • Readily available resources
  • Effective communication


My point is, it takes more than a title and enthusiasm to lead a successful team. 

You will be tested at times to dig deep and evaluate. In most cases, the devil will be in the details. In that evaluation, you must be both fair and objective in the criticism and/or decisions you may face. Look within yourself and honestly consider if you have fulfilled your commitments.

You will have to direct your attentions toward guidance, direction, delegation and inspiration to find the perfect balance. In some cases, you will need to challenge yourself to make the decision to possibly eliminate a team member if you don’t see a positive contribution to the overall objective.

Skill vs. will — simple, right?

Think again!  


Humbled to lead,

#chargeup   #lessonsinleadership   #leadership   #lead  #skill  #will  #skillvswill



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©2018 Victor Pisano/Charge Up. All rights reserved. You are free to use portions of this publication, provided the following credit is listed at the bottom: ©2018 Victor Pisano/Charge Up, is a media-based entity that provides intriguing, innovative and distinctive content, engaging its readers with real-world challenges and solutions while embracing obstacles and the value that failure can provide. While that sounds serious, we promise you will both learn AND laugh (and sometimes cry).Contact Charge Up at victor@chargeuptoday.com or visit our website at www.chargeuptoday.com.

Victor Pisano✏ The Intersection of Skill and Will

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