There is much responsibility and power held by a leader in an organization whether big or small.  There is much expectation on the quality of the leader’s expertise – you need to know everything thoroughly and must execute the organizational needs well…immediately, without question and with total assuredness.

These expectations of what a leader must be and do are largely based on the historical knowledge of other leaders.  The powerful leaders we know so much about and use their quotes, were not great leaders the day they stepped into their roles. 

If you ask anyone who is now well respected and well known as a leader, they will share with you their stories of mistakes and regrets of how they could have done something better; sooner; with great mental agility; without pain to others.

If the growing of a leader did not include the passage of learning, we would be bereft of great leadership.

Mistakes and uncertainty are part of the process of growing your expert leadership muscles.

The making of a leader is like Velcro – it attracts and sticks with much that is not needed or wanted.  You cannot know that until you have an example of how you want to lead – someone to emulate; a model of how your leadership “should” be done.

There are many paths to finding your mentor/coach that inspire you…that touch your value set and you know they are one of the people you want to be like.

My first inspiration for how I wanted to lead, came from an article in Forbes magazine.  A quote in an article I read that I cut out and still have in my wallet years later.  I’ve almost worn it out from taking it out and reading it…reminding me that this is what is important to me.  Allow me to share with you a part of my inspiration and career-long quote:

“…To succeed, we must have the will to succeed, we must have stamina, determination, backbone, perseverance, self-reliance, faith.  Let us grit our teeth and heroically resolve to keep on keeping on.  Triumph is often nearest when defeat seems inescapable.”  –  B.C. Forbes

Since that time I’ve found biographies; colleagues; staff; clients and prospects that have inspired me.  And there are people I’ve admired that I just called up and asked if I could speak with them about their talents and strengths.  I remember my first mentor, George Eckart, who mentored me through humiliation and my first management position.  I went to him one day and asked if he would be my mentor.  He closed the door and said that he would be pleased, but first I needed to know the following.  What he told me was a piece of behavior that he observed that was not helping me at all as a new woman manager; a woman in general, and with the other all-male managers…all engineers.  I was mortified; hid from him; cried my eyes out and then came back to thank him.  His mentoring made all the difference in the world.  I’ve never ever forgotten his message to me and the professional care that it took to tell me what needed to be said. 

If you are a leader or a want to be, how are you doing in cementing the characteristics of leading that you so badly want to have and use? 

Is there anything missing you want to do better; know more about; change to better suit you and your expertise?  If so, what are you doing about it?

The first and most important relationship you need to nail down is the one you have with yourself.  And as you allow yourself to grow and get better, you will attract those characteristics of leading that will serve you best…then serve others.

“To thine own self be true”.  And do you know who is that, by the way?

To Your Success,

P.S.  Assessments help you find you and then help you attract that which most important to you.  Email me directly about taking your leadership, communication and behavioral performance assessment.  Or you can visit our Assessment Center to get more information.  Don’t wait a day longer than necessary.  We need you leading, we really do. 

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