Leaders Who Lead Best are Led by Others

You will know the mark of a good leader when you feel it.
You will know the mark of a good leader when you feel the impact of their lessons.

Do you have a mentor? Is there someone that you turn to when you need direction or guidance on critical decisions? Some are lucky enough to be able to confidently turn to more than one adviser. Maybe you are experienced enough to be a mentor and have earned the trust of someone that turns to you in times of indecision.  A great leader is never ashamed to seek the input of those that are successful and have been Continue reading Leaders Who Lead Best are Led by Others

Leadership is NOT…

Inspire others and you will be inspired

My earlier post talked a bit about what I think leadership is.  I mentioned that there can be great discussions that lead us to conclude what leadership might look like if we talk about what leadership is NOT.  Leadership is NOT so many things that society believes it might be.  If someone is elected to a powerful public office, does this person automatically earn the distinction of being a Leader?  Being elected to a political office implies only one thing for sure (without examining specific examples of the actions or inactions of that person):  they have successfully lead a team of people to earn enough votes to be elected.  I am certainly not going to get into a political discussion here.  There are way too many blogs out there that you can read if you are

Continue reading Leadership is NOT…

You Need to Want to be a Leader

Where are you heading?
“Where you are heading in life is well defined by what you are learning in life.” ~Michael Scicchitano @life_leading
Henry Ford once said “Any man can learn anything he will, but no man can teach except to those who want to learn.”

When I think about being able to learn the skill set required to be an effective Leader, I think that this quote nicely summarizes my belief that leadership skills are NOT easily learned.  You need to want to be a Leader to learn to be one.  There exists a thirst inside those who truly want to be a Leader – a thirst for learning at every step of the way.  Learning when we succeed and learning more so when we fail.  And what sets the Great Leaders apart from the not-so-great leaders in our ever-changing world is that the Great Leaders want to share what they have learned with others.  Furthermore, you really need to know what being a Leader means before you can begin to transform yourself or help to transform others – and remember, it is not about “making it to the top”. Continue reading You Need to Want to be a Leader

When Great Ideas are not so Good

Don't let the ideas die...
Don’t let great ideas die in the board room…give them a chance with some planning and action.

We have all been there before.  We are in the boardroom and someone blurts out this amazing and life-changing thought for your team or division.  The room is abuzz with excitement and plentiful hope.   The magnitude of the thought that has just flown into the air is nearly unimaginable.  People are feverishly taking notes and colleagues are offering their praises.  “This will surely put an end to (insert the problem of the week/month/quarter here).”  A few more agenda items are quickly ticked off and the team forms a procession around the creative genius that spawned this magnificent notion.  Many of those desperate to seek a solution join in the celebration and you can hear the pats on the back as you scurry off to another meeting.  Great!  Problem solved…Next!  Whoa! But…wait a minute!

Continue reading When Great Ideas are not so Good

Leadership is…

The right Leader will take you there…

One of the most fascinating discussions I can remember from business school was related to defining what true leadership is. Many times this centered around describing the traits that good leaders possess. Sometimes the debate was about what leadership is NOT. Case review after case review outlined how individuals reacted in times of crisis or financial difficulty. I have read numerous articles that discuss the traits that make up great leaders. One of my favorite articles by Daniel Goleman talks about how great leaders need to be dynamic to get results – that is, they must adapt to the environment and act (or react) accordingly. Sounds easy enough, right?

Goleman’s research tells us that these skills can be learned.  However, based on my experiences, I find it somewhat difficult be aligned with this school of thought.  I do know that there is plenty of research on this subject and I do believe that one can hone these leadership skills through study and practice.  It is less scientific to be able to gauge when and where to use the skills, and to determine which set of skills is required when faced with an infinite amount of situations.  I believe the only way that the application Continue reading Leadership is…

Living Life by Leading

There are many things I live for in life.  Many things I am passionate about.  Of course, my family is number one.  They mean the world to me.   With every experience we share together, I see them through a new set of eyes.  Watching them grow – physically, emotionally, intellectually and spiritually – is just awe inspiring.  I love to live life with my family and I try so hard each and every day to be a Leader within my family unit.  Setting the right examples for my children and helping them grow into human beings that are caring and compassionate.  I also have a passion for writing and want to share my experiences as a Leader with many people.  Living life as a Leader is not easy.  Whether you are a parent, a teacher, a police officer, a CEO or a child, leading can be a very crucial part of your life.  You just have to be aware of the opportunities to lead – and seize them.

I am sure most readers have heard of the principle of a “teachable moment”.  The “free encyclopedia” defines a teachable moment:  “in education, the time at which learning a particular topic or idea becomes possible or easiest.”  It is best characterized by the moment in which the “student” is actively engaged.    [You will see me bold and italicize a fair number of terms; these are my personal “buzz words” – words and terms that I will use often, but they also literally make me buzz!]  I venture through life looking for similar moments.  These are moments that beg for someone to motivate others, influence colleagues, encourage children or students.  These are what I like to call “lead-able moments“.   Continue reading Living Life by Leading