I continue to be amazed – and thankful – for the leadership lessons that seem so easy to access for anyone willing to invest the time.
New leadership books are constantly released. There’s always some workshop or conference. Blogs, newsletters, and most any other medium offer tips on how to lead, develop the potential in others and bring vision to reality.
I decided for the last “Lead On” of this year that I would share a few more memorable leadership concepts. The insights are from speakers Michelle Pizer, interviewed for her two-week “Crack the Leadership Code” podcasts in July, and from speakers at this year’s Global Leadership Summit in August.
They're good reminders – or useful challenges – as we look to a new year of fresh starts.
* Leadership is about how do you lead yourself first and then how do you unleash the talents of others. – Eileen McDargh, ranked 7th of the World’s Top 30 Communication Gurus by Global Gurus International
* Become a student of human behavior. “People you’re going to be leading are human, amazing, full of potential, exciting, messy, inconsistent.” … Keep the tripod in mind: you, your team and the organization. You have to be able to think about all three to be a good leader. “You can’t balance it on one or two legs.” – Kevin Eikenberry, chief potential officer of The Kevin Eikenberry Group, a leadership and learning consulting company, and ranked as one of Inc.com’s Top 100 Leadership and Management Experts in the World.
* Block time on your personal schedule to become a constant learner. If you don’t make the time, life will completely overwhelm you. – Dr. Kevin Gazzara, executive coach for many Fortune 100 companies, a leadership professor and co-author of the book “The Leader of OZ”
* Exercise the 30-30 rule: Spend 30 minutes a day on something that’s 30 days or more away. It’s a step toward long-term planning and strategic thinking – “just giving yourself that gift of a longer viewpoint.” Everyone has had something on their calendar – he or she either put it there or someone did on his or her behalf – that seems like it surprises them. “So many clients we talk to feel stuck in the day-to-day. They’re just putting out fires and emergencies and things that were due yesterday, and there’s really no end to that cycle.” – Jodi Womack, author of “Get Momentum: How To Start When You’re Stuck.”
* Humans tend to be comfort seeking… but we grow and evolve in the zone of discomfort. As a leader, you have to be the first one off the high dive. You also have to nudge or be willing to push others to discomfort so they become their best. – Bill Treasurer, an author and chief encouragement officer at Giant Leap Consulting.
* There’s a difference in serving and trying to please people. Trying to please usually is a result of a feeling of inadequacy and maybe insecurity. It involves sometimes trying to please upper management or others. Serving, however, comes from a place of doing the right thing, and sometimes that’s not popular. “I really believe that that is what sets the true leaders apart.” – Farnoosh Brock, an author, speaker and executive coach.
* Things should be managed. People should be led. – Lennox Cornwall, author of “Embracing Failure: Your Key to Success.”
* Regarding relationship management: Know what’s going on with you and with the other person. Adjust to find common ground and improve the quality of the relationship. The biggest mistake people tend to make is winning the battle to lose the war. – Dr. Travis Bradberry, author and co-founder of TalentSmart.
* Vision should keep you awake at night and energized during the day… Through empowerment we can do incredible things. A good test to know if you’re empowering your people is to take a long vacation and see what happens to your vision. – Jossy Chacko, founder and president of Empart Inc., a global ministry