Dear Future Leader,

As you read this, undoubtedly you sincerely believe that you will become a future leader. The reality is that virtually every person your age believes they have a promising and bright future. Yet, sad, the vast majority of peers will not realize the future they are dreaming of.

What sets leaders apart?

Everyone has a dream. Most of us have more than one. In my opinion, the people who are able to actualize their dreams have three qualities that are easier to live than to describe.

The first quality is desire. Everyone dreams; everyone wants; but how many people have burning desire, a quest, a drive that they will not give up on? That overwhelming desire, that single-minded desire, that obsessive desire is what sets future leaders apart.

Yet desire in and of itself is no enough. The second priority must be goals. You must know what you want and how to get there. You must set standards for yourself. You must have trail-makers along the way. You must clearly delineate what your path to success will be and keep to it no matter how tempting the tangents might be.

The third quality of leadership and in some way the most important, is persistence. That is a sine qua non. You must realize that for the vast majority of us there will be setbacks along the way. There will be defeats, some of which may be our fault and many others which won’t. What will we do when confronted by an obstacle? What will we do when, despite our best-laid plans, we lose?

We have two choices. We can give up, take the path of least resistance, say “oh well I gave it my best shot and I didn’t make it, so I’ll settle for whatever I can get.” Or, we can persist. We can say, “No matter how many times I lose I can try again until I win. No matter how many times I’m knocked down, I’ll get up until I succeed.”

I sincerely believe that with these three qualities: desire, goals and persistence, you can accomplish anything you dream of.

Congratulations! I sincerely look forward to your future success.


Debrah Lee Charatan


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