Great leadership is highly sought after. These are the three qualities that I think are most important. What would you say are yours?
With Love and To Your Success,
Happy Independence Day to all of my fellow Americans!
Today is a day that we celebrate life’s freedom with gratitude. I have a very long list of life’s freedoms for which I am grateful. Topping that list is my ability to make choices.
And we always can make a choice…always!
Dr. Viktor Frankl, one of my greatest mentors, was a brilliant psychiatrist captured by the Nazis and imprisoned in a series of concentration camps. His notes of his work and all of his possessions were seized. Stripped of everything, literally and figuratively, he was given a number to replace his name. “The experience of camp life shows that man does have a choice of action,” Frankl stated in Man’s Search for Meaning, “Man can preserve a vestige of spiritual freedom, of independence of mind, even in such terrible conditions of psychic and physical stress.”
Dr. Frankl realized this truth when he wrote, “What alone remains is ‘the last of human freedoms’—the ability to choose one’s attitude in a given set of circumstances.”
Those are very wise and applicable words then, and today. When we place ourselves in a victim role, we are victims. We do create our own realities. However, we have a choice in how that reality looks, as co-creators. We can choose to create a different perception, a different reality.
Let freedom ring!
We just completed the season for local government strategic planning. I’ve seen and used many different strategies for the strategic planning process. Brainstorming sessions are great fun, looking at possibilities. As we start to drill down our brainstorming into goals, hopefully actionable, SMART goals, the more real our planning becomes. Stating the goals, listing the objectives, and identifying the milestones are all necessary elements to your strategic plan.
I’ve see so many great plans brought to this point. Strategic plan done, check that box! However, the plan means nothing if there is not strategic doing.
Strategic doing is where the real work begins. We need to pull the plan off of the shelf and put the pedal to the medal. It is time to start doing the strategy. The strategy I find most effective in this action planning process is:
As always, I love to hear from you. What are some tactics you use for strategic doing?
With Love and To Your Success,
I’ve always considered myself as an organized person, but I must admit that sometimes I get overwhelmed and lose control of my time and organization. In those times of overwhelm, I need to get a grip!
Very recently, I found myself in this space of needing to regain control of my time and organization. I realized that nearly every time I got to this place I experienced the same symptoms in my thoughts and behaviors. I feel:
Unable to plan due to many, many dark clouds hanging over my head, these are telling signs that I need to get a grip on my organization. When I recognize these symptoms, I do the following simple steps to re-gain control over my life (especially as part of my New Year’s Resolution!):
The simple steps outlined above give me structure, which in turn gives me freedom! When I am free of clutter and dark clouds, I am able to concentrate, create, and plan. On Thursday, I will share with you my most recent file system, my Freedom Filing System.
With love and no overwhelm,
Perceptions are the stories we tell ourselves regarding what we see and how we interpret the world around us. Les Brown, one of the great 21st century storytellers said, “How people live their lives is as a result of the stories that they believe about themselves,” What are your stories?
Do they serve you as your aspire to reach your highest potential? Do your stories lift you up or do they bring you down? Do your stories represent who you really are, your true essence?
Let’s look at a possible story: If you greeted someone in the morning at work and he or she did not return your greeting, what would you think? Are they mad at you? Do you wonder all morning what you may have said to tick them off? Do you toss and turn that night because you’re afraid that when you laughed too loudly at something they said two weeks ago that you thought was a joke, but it turned out it wasn’t?
Or what if the answer is simply that they didn’t return your greeting because they didn’t hear you. Or perhaps, they were distracted replaying a discussion they had with their teenager the night before.
What are the stories that you tell yourself? These skewed perceptions can sabotage our relationships with others and our relationship with our self. If your stories no longer resonate with who you are, it’s probably time to create a new story. Change your perception and you change your world.
The uncomplicated beauty in this lesson is that by standing in awareness and looking at our beliefs and thoughts, we can simply make a choice to keep them or release them.
When we release those beliefs and thoughts that no longer serve us, we take back our power from fear to love, from negativity to positivity, from ego to Spirit. We see and understand perceptions and stand in our power to change those beliefs to experience miraculous shifts in our reality, lives, and work.
As always, I love to hear from you. What story do you tell? Does it serve you or drain you?
I recently conducted some market research to learn from leaders how I can best support their leadership growth and development. I asked a series of questions and received great responses, food for thought, and feedback.
When I spoke with a man in the military, he said one of the most important aspects that he looks for in leadership is “keepin it real”. OK, he is quite a bit younger than I am! However, this message is ageless and timeless.
Most of us have a pretty good B.S. meter and can smell fake a mile away. This is especially important to us, as leaders, to tap into truth and stand in our authenticity. When we stand in authenticity, we stand in power. THAT is what makes us powerful leaders – authenticity.
And let’s face it; there is nothing more authentic or real than love.
When we lead with love and authenticity, we practice:
Branding and image consulting are terms that we’ve no doubt heard before, typically in the context of marketing. Have you thought about your brand? No, I am not talking about the company for which you work—I am talking about YOU!
What is your brand, your leadership image? Are you keepin it real? Are you respected because you’ve earned it or are you feared because of your title? What is the first thing your team thinks about when your name comes up?
Some of us may say that we don’t care about what others think about us.
Really, is that really true?
As leaders, our primary task is to motivate and influence others toward a vision and/or goal. If others are not buying our brand, then we don’t really have followers.
How can we consciously create our leadership brand? Follow these 5 simple steps:
I would love to hear from you. How would you describe an authentic leader, one who is keepin it real?
The debate continues – should we separate leadership from management? We explore that question and look through a self-awareness lens at authenticity and vulnerability.
In my experience, the words leadership and management are used interchangeably in the workplace. In the management and leadership classes I’ve taught over the years, we define those terms differently, while recognizing that leadership is a critical part of management. In this episode, we look to Forrest Gump’s mamma for some sage advice about this distinction.
I recently facilitated a leadership boot camp where we discussed the importance of leadership authenticity and vulnerability – yes, in a boot camp! Of course, going to those vulnerable places begins with self-awareness and a ton of bravery.
In this episode, I answer the question, “What do Forrest Gump, The Who, and leadership have in common?”
I would love to hear from you. What do you suppose keeps us from our vulnerability and authenticity as leaders?
What would a new professionalism look like? We are taught to remove ourselves from any emotion (including love) and be “professional” as if being professional makes us non-human or even worse, super-human. This practice, and many of us have gotten this concept down good, has propelled us in our careers, but also has left us empty. Developing emotional intelligence in the workplace with leaders and all levels of the organization will help to create a new professionalism.
Being professional does not mean being distant, aloof, uncaring, and impersonal. We are in a world of transition and change. We are in a world where many of us are creating new models for living. In this spirit and in the spirit of love, let’s create a new professionalism. Let’s create a professionalism that stands for something powerful, serving, supportive, and love-filled.
In today’s video, I share what a new professionalism looks like.
I would love to hear from you. How would you create a new professionalism and what does it look like?