Leadership in Action

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Coworkers discussing a fileI find it interesting seeing people wanting to be leaders like it is the first-place position in a race.  Each one is vying for that coveted position to be able to lead and tell people what to do. A position that has an aura of power and authority that is bestowed upon them, that enables them to give commands that their people have to follow and carry out.

Such demonstration of intense focus to gain power is akin to purchasing a house, thinking that once the house is purchased it is the end of the journey. But that is far from the truth. While the initial act of purchasing a house requires a huge financial outlay, the work that comes after that is even bigger and more demanding.

After the purchase one has to tend to the needs of maintaining a property, like mowing the lawn, cleaning the gutters, trimming the bushes, planting and caring for the plants, raking leaves, shoveling the driveway during winters and the overall upkeep of the house inside and out. All the ensuing activities are often not clear until the purchase is completed because the intense focus of acquiring it shifts the focus to the house itself.

As John C Maxwell said, “Leadership is action, not a position.”

Most folks fail to realize that there is a lot required of them after they arrive at the destination and are given the opportunity to lead others. They have to serve their constituents; they need to spend a great deal of time and managing people is not easy. As a result, they fail at it because they don’t have a clear picture of what they need to do.

Therefore it is important for leaders to educate their constituents about the work that is ahead of the folks who desire to be leaders. Just like purchasing a house, the single act pales in comparison to the commitment you need to dedicate time to serve and lead others. Until you realize the effort needed and learn what lies ahead, it is best to take the time in your journey to equip yourself with the necessary skills and knowledge to make it happen.

I make it a point to mentor my people of the importance of the work that lies ahead and the commitment that is needed to get there.

John C. Maxwell said that as we move up, we have to give up and do more time with and for our people. Unless one realizes the work needed ahead, they will certainly fail in leading their people. If you’re willing to sacrifice your time and develop people, that is when you should contemplate being a leader.

One must develop the heart of serving others and growing talent around them. It is the best gift they can give to their constituents to help them grow and develop.

Writing is a labor of love, if you agree with my post let me know your thoughts. If you disagree, let me know your perspective, I look forward to learning from you.

What are your thoughts regarding the demands of leadership?

Someday is today

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Someday

When I was a little, I often said, “I wish I were older”, “I wish I could do this and do that”, “ I wish I could be someone who could achieve a certain level of success” and my favorite, “I wish I would wake up tomorrow and things around me would change so I would be appreciated by people around me.”   I spent a lot time daydreaming and wishing things would happen.

So, what’s my point? My point is that sometimes we can’t take what is going on around us, but we just wish it would go away.   You wish it would change, but you’re not doing anything to change your situation.  We can’t keep on wishing; sometimes we need to do something to change our situation.

As I reminiscence on the past, I realized that what we do today will be the foundation of our future. In a way Someday is today; what you do today will help you achieve your goal. Just like doctors, they were not born doctors.   They were babies that grew up and went to school like everyone else. They were once a kindergarten student like everyone else. They graduated middle school, high school, went to college, and eventually the journey led them to medical school. In the end, with all their hard work they became doctors.   The same is true for many professions in life.

To achieve something we need to do something. To gain something we need to earn it.   As a basketball coach, I always tell my players that to get better as players we need to work on the fundamentals and practice.   Practice does not make perfect, but rather we improve.     In life, it is not worth striving for perfection. Our goal is to be better than we were a year ago.   Each year we should learn something new. The day we stop learning is the day we will decay and be left behind.

If you wish for a better tomorrow, you must do something to change your situation. In my junior year in high school, I made that decision that helped me to get to where I am today.   So, the next time you wish for something, I suggest you to do the following:

  • Write down your wish. By writing down your wish, it becomes a physical thing that you can see.
  • List the things you need to do to achieve your dream.
  • For each item, prepare an action plan
  • For each action plan, set a target date to accomplish it
  • Let your inner circle know of your plan. This will up the game as everyone knows about it.
  • Track your progress
  • Be consistent and commit to getting it done

Remember that someday is today, the actions or decisions you made today will help shape tomorrow. If you want to achieve something someday, you must act today.   Good luck!