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Core Leader Competencies

This chart identifies the core leader competencies and their subsets.

Competencies provide a clear and consistent way of conveying expectations for Army leaders. Current and future leaders want to know what to do to succeed in their leadership responsibilities. The core leader competencies apply across all levels of the organization, across leader positions, and throughout careers. Competencies are demonstrated through behaviors that can be readily observed and assessed by a spectrum of leaders and followers: superiors, subordinates, peers, and mentors. This makes them a good basis for leader development and focused multi-source assessment and feedback. The chart below identifies the core leader competencies and their subsets.

Leader competencies improve over extended periods. Leaders acquire the basic competencies at the direct leadership level. As the leader moves to organizational and strategic level positions, the competencies provide the basis for leading through change. Leaders continuously refine and extend the ability to perform these competencies proficiently and learn to apply them to increasingly complex situations.

These competencies are developed, sustained, and improved by performing one's assigned tasks and missions. Leaders do not wait until combat deployments to develop their leader competencies. They use every peacetime training opportunity to assess and improve their ability to lead Soldiers. Civilian leaders also use every opportunity to improve.

To improve their proficiency, Army leaders can take advantage of chances to learn and gain experience in the leader competencies. They should look for new learning opportunities, ask questions, seek training opportunities, and request performance critiques. This lifelong approach to learning ensures leaders remain viable as a professional corps.



Core Leader Competencies





Leads Others
Extends Influence Beyond the Chain of Command
Leads By Example
  • Provide purpose, motivation, inspiration
  • Enforce Standards
  • Balance mission and welfare of soldiers
  • Build trust outside lines of authority
  • Understand sphere, means and limits of influence
  • Negotiate, build consensus, resolve conflict
  • Display character
  • Lead with confidence in adverse conditions
  • Demonstrate confidence
  • Listen actively
  • state goals for action
  • Ensure shared understanding



Creates a positive environment
Prepares self
Develops leaders
  • Set the conditions for positive climate
  • Build teamwork and cohesion
  • Encourage initiative
  • Demonstrate care for people
  • Be prepared for expected and unexpected challenges
  • Expand knowledge
  • Maintain self awareness
  • Assess developmental needs.  Develop on the job
  • Support professional and personal growth.
  • Help people learn
  • Counsel, coach and mentor
  • Build team skills and processes
Get Results
  • Provide direction, guidance and priorities
  • Develop and execute plans
  • Accomplish tasks consistently


Source: FM 6-22, Army Leadership (Competent, Confident and Agile) October 2006