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Who's the Boss?

by Kathy Pillow-Price
July/August 2006
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/whos-the-boss/5017006/

Have you ever noticed that when a parent of a two year old enters a room, another adult will frequently comment, "Well, I see you brought the boss with you." Then most others will laugh because they get the joke; they also know that there is some measure of truth in calling a two year old "a boss." In fact, many two year olds are quite adept at getting things done their way without ever taking Leadership 101. How do they do it?

Two year olds practice what I like to call "natural" leadership skills. That means that they know what to do to get others to do what they want, but they can't tell us how they know what to do. After observing enough two year olds (and living with three of them), I have found that most toddlers use
a variety of strategies to get others to do what they want.

Leadership strategies

In observing two year olds I have identified seven key strategies they use to get what they want:

-- persuasive communication
-- listening skills
-- reliance on teamwork
-- openness to change
-- social skills
-- loyalty, trust
-- commitment to lifelong learning

Let's take a closer look at each of ...

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