Do we absolutely have to be enthusiastic to be a successful leader? Probably not, we can likely find cases where a somewhat unenthusiastic person has become a success. What would be much more difficult to find however is an enthusiastic person who is not a success.
Dale Carnegie said that “enthusiasm is the little recognized secret to success.” I believe that statement is as true today as it was when he made it 70 years ago. It is true for anyone but maybe there is a bit more truth in it where leaders are concerned.
Think about it, you’re trying to convince a someone that your idea is best, so much so that it is worth taking a risk to implement. That’s hard enough as it is, it becomes almost impossible when you have the enthusiasm of an autopsy subject. How can anyone become excited about what you have to offer when you appear not to be? Would you follow someone just going through the motions?
Successful leaders are excited by what they’re doing and that excitement is contagious. They draw people to them because these people want to work with them, do business with them and just be around them. Are you that type of person? Many Dale Carnegie classes begin with a “warm-up” that has participants shouting “act enthusiastic and you’ll be enthusiastic.” I’ve seen that “warm-up” many times and I know that statement to be absolutely true.
Sometimes it is as simple as acting enthusiastic, because you see, you can even catch enthusiasm from yourself.