This week I am in Manila working with 2 different clients on leadership training. I listened to a speech that Norman Schwarzkopf, Jr. gave many years ago and it really hit home with me. He made a point that managers, manage 'stuff' and leaders lead people. I have always said that developing people is not a box to be checked off, but a process that lives on forever. I believe that leadership starts at a very young age. When my daughter was 13 years old we sent her to a leadership camp in Northern Michigan. At this camp the counselors worked on developing great future leaders. There are some simple elements that she learned at this camp that apply today in leadership. 1. Have confidence
2. Have good character
3. Understand that ethics are critical
4. Know what you value
5. Have integrity
6. Look in the mirror and be honest with what looks back at you.
The last bit of advice I give you is to get yourself organized and manage your time effectively. How many managers do you know that are late for meetings, late at getting projects completed and missing deadlines. Nothing separates a successful leader from unsuccessful managers more than how they use their time. We all have 24 hours in a day, and most waste it on non-productive items. Leading people takes time, patience and a 'will to help people.' As a leader today you must have your vision and priorities in place. Day to day activities cause many managers to lose sight of the over riding goals, and in some cases these same managers fail to communicate to the 'rank and file' what the big picture is and how we are going to get there. Remember it is hard to prioritize if you don't have a vision in place.
VISION- as a leader you have to see this clearly
STRATEGY - as a leader you need to know what it will take to get to the vision
PRIORITIES - as a leader you need to empower your team to make it happen - the what, where and how
As a leader today you must be comfortable in your own skin. It takes a lot of effort to be true to yourself, but it takes more effort and guts to accept feedback from your team. Remember to look in the mirror and make sure you like what is looking back at you!