How to develop leadership skills as a young professional

According to a Gallup survey, great managers possess 5 key traits:

They motivate every employee and focus on associate engagement.
They drive results through assertiveness and overcoming challenges.
They foster accountability and create a culture of expectation.
They build relationships and earn the trust of their teams.
They fuel decision-making based on facts, not politics.
The Gallup survey went on to say that very few managers and leaders possess every talent, so do not think you have to engage in training opportunities for each of these areas. Focus on the areas in which you feel the most opportunity for improvement. As you mentioned, your current employer does not focus on career pathing; you will need to look externally to develop your leadership skills. To do this, there are many options you can employ, five of which I have outlined below:

Consider a graduate degree in a management or leadership field, providing for a formal opportunity to learn the theory of effective management and organizational leadership, while also possibly providing for real-world leadership experiences through capstone projects or internships.
Join an association in your field or industry and participate in their professional development forums. Much less expensive than an entire degree program, most professional associations incorporate training and career development as key benefits to their membership.
Seek a professional mentor with leadership talents you wish to emulate. Think of those around you; perhaps there is someone internally within your current employer that you admire. Approach that leader and ask if he/she would be willing to engage in a mentor/mentee relationship with you where he/she can share leadership lessons to help nurture your own leadership and management talents.

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