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An image of a Saint Thomas Academy cadet smiling
David Jacobson

Nobody can be an alpha all the time. But everyone can be a leader at some time. That means your son has the capacity for leadership, even if he does not start out as the biggest, strongest, fastest, most athletic, smartest, or most charismatic.

“Some people ask if you’re born with leadership or if it’s learned,” says noted leadership expert Col. Neil Hetherington, U.S. Army (ret.). “Becoming a leader takes a little bit of both. And, it can never be perfected. Every single day I still learn something new about leadership.”

Different situations call for different forms of leadership that rely on various skill sets, mentalities, backgrounds and experiences. Through that lens, here are five steps you and your son can take toward leadership, as shared by Col. Hetherington, now the Commandant of Cadets at Saint Thomas Academy (Mendota Heights, Minn.), an all-male, Catholic, military leadership school for grades 6-12.

Learn more by downloading our guide!