Leadership lessons are all around us and I tend to be one who observes even the most mundane of messages and relates them to leading ourselves and leading others. These three mindset shifts have come from recent observations of clients and colleagues and are readily applicable to how those you lead respond to who you are. They focus on your energy, agility, and humanity and along with desire, practice, and skills, might just make up the key elements you need to lead … well.
You are not Two Different People
I’ve heard this a dozen times or more in recent weeks when facilitating profiles with a client: “Well, that’s who I am at work”. No, that’s who you are. Drop the act and the energy it takes to maintain it, and find the joy and energy you get from being authentically you. Regardless of what is widely condoned in our culture, no matter where you go, you take you with you and faking who you are for the sake of meeting some ideal at the office … is exhausting and unproductive.
There’s still more learning to do
There’s a phrase tossed around in the training and self-help industries that goes “If you’re not growing, you’re dying”. Think plants and nature. Stuff is either growing or decaying. There’s really no stagnant state in nature. Some things grow fast, some more slowly, but whatever the speed you choose, keep growing. The more you learn, the more you know, and the more you know, the more you grow. And no, no matter where you are in your leadership path, you’ve not learned it all.
Even Presidents are People, Too
Yesterday, I received an email from the President of hotel chain. He was thanking me for a wonderful presentation I shared with his GMs and relaying the story of how he applied the principles of the CORE Profile® we use and what I taught in class, to advice he shared with his son. The crux of his email was focused on thanking me for helping him be a “good dad”. There were tears in my eyes as THAT is why I do what I do and then I was reminded of the lesson. Presidents are people, too. No matter how you see them or what they show you at the office, those that lead you have lives and are real. Do you remember that when “managing up”? Do you show your authentic people side to those you lead?
No matter how you embody these principles, keep them as an important of your daily efforts to lead you and lead others even more effectively. Heck, make a wallet card reminder if it helps. Often it’s these small shifts and areas of awareness that will prevent those you lead from approaching you, willingly following you, feeling like they understand what you want and who you are and doing everything in their power to do as you ask.
Monica Wofford, MBA, CSP, is an international speaker, trainer, and author who helps managers who were promoted, actually become prepared to lead.