How To List Leadership Skills on Your Resume in 5 Steps

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published August 11, 2021

Leadership skills are attributes that help you inspire others to execute tasks while working toward shared goals. These traits help leaders increase productivity and efficiency within teams or departments and improve a company's overall performance. If you're applying for leadership positions, you can include your leadership skills in your resume to show employers you can guide employees to success. In this article, we explain why it's important to list leadership skills on a resume, define various types of leadership skills, describe how to include them on your resume and provide a template and examples.

Related: Leadership Skills: Definitions and Examples

Why is it important to list leadership skills on a resume?

Leadership skills can be important in various roles throughout a company, such as management positions. It's important to list leadership skills on a resume to show employers you can take initiative to complete tasks and motivate others to do their best work. Employers often want to hire people who can prioritize tasks effectively, resolve issues quickly and model workplace behavior for other team members.

Related: How To Demonstrate Leadership Skills at Work

Types of leadership skills to list on a resume

There are many types of leadership skills you can list on your resume. Here are some common ones:

Communication

Through effective communication, leaders can help teams or departments understand their roles in a project in order to operate more efficiently and achieve a shared goal. Listening and responding to questions or concerns from team members can also help leaders learn how to better support team members. In addition, leaders can use communication skills to recognize others for their contributions or achievements, which can improve morale and motivate employees to continue performing well.

Read more: How To Highlight Communication Skills in a Resume

Organization

Many leaders handle multiple projects simultaneously, so it's helpful if they know how to prioritize tasks to make sure they're completing the most important ones first. Leaders may also have many duties, such as overseeing employees, developing new ideas or ensuring adherence with deadlines. Organizational skills like time management and attention to detail can help leaders manage these various jobs effectively.

Problem-solving

Effective leaders can use their problem-solving skills to quickly resolve potential conflicts in the workplace and achieve actionable results. For example, leaders may solve problems by having team meetings to research and brainstorm solutions. This can help create camaraderie among team members, which may help teams work together more efficiently in the future.

Relationship-building

Leadership involves building relationships with other team members. Leaders can build these productive relationships by actively listening to others, giving them praise, offering constructive feedback and creating a safe and positive work culture. When leaders collaborate with others as part of a team, they can connect with team members and motivate them to work together to accomplish goals.

Conflict resolution

Resolving conflicts in a timely manner can lead to increased productivity and morale, which makes this skill important for leaders. Leaders use conflict resolution techniques to listen to employees' concerns and understand conflicts from different points of view. They usually work with all involved parties to find solutions that address everyone's needs.

Delegation

Because leaders often work on many initiatives, it's helpful to understand how to delegate tasks to keep projects running smoothly. Delegation involves planning, scheduling and organizing projects, as well as assigning team members to specific roles. It's beneficial when leaders understand each team member's strengths so that they can assign tasks effectively and keep employees productive.

Related: 20 Leadership Qualities That Make a Great Leader

How to include leadership skills on a resume

You can follow these steps to incorporate leadership skills into your resume:

1. Study the job posting

Before you apply for a position, it's important to read through the job description carefully so you understand what leadership skills the employer considers valuable. Many companies use an applicant tracking system to review resumes for specific words or phrases they've listed in the job description. Using these same keywords on your own resume might improve your chances of getting your resume to a hiring manager.

2. Consider your past experience

Think about your past work experience and recall some situations where you've shown leadership skills. It's important to have specific examples in order to show employers you can lead employees successfully in a future role. If you're unsure what leadership skills you possess, ask a trusted friend or coworker about your greatest strengths as a leader.

3. Craft a powerful summary

Discussing your leadership skills in the professional summary of your resume can help you communicate your strengths to a hiring manager. In a few sentences, describe your professional experience and highlight some of the leadership skills that make you a qualified candidate for the position. If you've received an award or other recognition for your leadership skills in the past, you can also mention these in your summary.

4. Showcase your achievements

In the work experience section, list several examples of job responsibilities or situations related to your leadership skills. You can quantify your achievements with facts, figures or statistics to show the full impact of your leadership in previous positions. Try to use compelling verbs to describe your experiences, such as:

  • Implement

  • Execute

  • Spearhead

  • Overhaul

  • Initiate

  • Coach

  • Mentor

  • Oversee

  • Inspire

  • Motivate

5. List relevant skills

The skills portion of your resume is an excellent place to include your leadership skills so that employers can find them easily. Leadership skills typically include soft skills, which refer to personality traits or habits regarding how you work by yourself and with others. However, you can also list hard skills, or technical skills, related to leadership as well. For example, if you're applying for a leadership position in business, you might list strategic planning as a skill because it's both a leadership skill and a hard skill.

Read more: Hard Skills vs. Soft Skills

Template for a resume with leadership skills

Here's a template for a resume that highlights leadership skills:

[Name]
[Location]
[Phone number]
[Email]

Professional summary
[Briefly describe your leadership experience and relevant leadership skills in one to three sentences.]

Work experience
[Job title]
[Name of company]
[Location]
[Start date and end date]

  • [Job responsibility or achievement]

  • [Job responsibility or achievement]

  • [Job responsibility or achievement]

Education
[Name of school]
[Name of degree or diploma]

Skills

  • [Leadership skill]

  • [Leadership skill]

  • [Leadership skill]

Example of leadership skills on a resume

Here are some examples of how to include leadership skills in various parts of your resume:

Summary

Here's an example of a resume summary that describes a candidate's leadership skills:

Highly organized and results-focused leader with eight years of experience coaching and mentoring teams of 5 to 15 employees. Proven record of spearheading projects to increase operational efficiency and improve collaboration among interdepartmental teams. Possesses exceptional communication and problem-solving skills.

Experience

Here's an example of an experience section on a resume that includes leadership skills:

Work experience
Store manager
Rosebloom General Store
Rosebloom, California
June 2018–Present

  • Oversee a team of 13 employees, communicating effectively to set priorities and expectations for each shift

  • Resolve issues quickly by listening to concerns and collaborating with assistant managers to find solutions

  • Created an incentive program that led to a 15% increase in employee retention

  • Coach and mentor floor staff through weekly team meetings and monthly staff-building exercises

Skills

Here's an example of a list of leadership skills on a resume:

  • Communication

  • Team building

  • Conflict resolution

  • Time management

  • Organization

  • Strategic planning

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