What is leadership?

General Description of the Module:

Before using the leadership skills training module and developing your leadership skills, it is a good idea to define what leadership is. In this module you will come up with your own definition and discuss leadership with your peers.

Activity: What is leadership?

Specific Objectives:

  • To come up with a definition of leadership.
  • To discuss the meaning and relevance of leadership.

Duration : 30-40 minutes

Resources: Pens, paper, large piece of paper/board.

Description of the activity:

  1. First brainstorm ideas, words or phrases that are related to leadership and write them down on a large paper/board. Look for brainstorming rules below.
  2. Next, divide into small groups and, using the words from your braintstorm, create your definition of what leadership is.
  3. When all groups are finished, share your definitions and vote to pick one.
  4. Then, you can compare your definition with the Future Youth School Forums definition, which you can find in the glossary.

Suggested questions for discussion:

  • Is your definition different or similar to the Future Youth School Forums definition?
  • If it is different, how?
  • Which one do you agree more with?
  • Do you think leadership is relevant in your lives?
  • Can you think of examples of leadership from your lives and in general?

Suggestion and tips for facilitation:

What is brainstorming?

Brainstorming is a creative technique by which a group tries to find a solution for a specific problem by gathering a list of ideas spontaneously contributed by its members.
A brainstorming session requires a facilitator, a brainstorming space and something on which to write ideas, such as a white-board a flip chart or software tool. The facilitator's responsibilities include guiding the session, encouraging participation and writing ideas down.


  • Make your list of possibilities as long as possible.
  • Do not make any judgements, evaluations or examinations while you are brainstorming. Accept all ideas whether you think they are 'right' or 'wrong'.
  • Allow for bizarre and irrational as well as usual and predictable choices.
  • Do not question, discuss or defend any possibility – just write it down.

Individual brainstorming:
If you are doing this activity on your own, individual brainstorming is also an option. Just try to think of as many ideas related to the subject of leadership and write them down.