I am constantly on the lookout for students who have the potential to lead. When I find them, I ask them this question: Have you ever considered applying or running for a student leadership position?
I want to encourage people to lead. The only way one truly learns to lead is by actually leading.
Most of the articles I write on this site are meant to encourage you to move into a leadership role, to improve your leadership skills, and to inspire you to step up and guide a group of people in a common purpose and goal.
This is not one of those posts. Today I want to try and talk you out of it.
Maybe you can relate to the following scenario…
I have a task that I need to do. I know it needs to be done because I wrote it down on my to-do list. I know it needs to be done today because I put today’s date next to it as a deadline. I have everything I need to be able to successfully accomplish this task. I have the skill, I have the ability, and I have the time. But there is one thing I lack that is keeping me from starting…
I don’t feel like doing it.
I’ll be honest with you. I face this type of situation all…the…time.
Somewhere between dreaming, scheming, planning, strategizing, and organizing I lose the motivation for the doing part. I have all of the tools and resources and time to get something done, but I just don’t feel like doing it.
Fortunately, I’ve learned the secret formula to get past this. You’ll be amazed at how effective it is.
The stuff of life can pile up quickly. Each day I accumulate new to-do’s, countless pieces of paper, unforeseen problems, random interruptions and numerous distractions. Over time, I begin to form piles. Piles on my desk. Piles in my mind. Piles around the goals I’m working to accomplish. In order to be productive, I must do battle with the clutter.
The clutter is a source of stress if it’s not addressed. Sometimes I don’t do anything because I’m so overwhelmed by everything. But ignoring the piles only makes them bigger. And as the piles grow, I have this gnawing feeling that I’ve forgotten something important.
Over the years I’ve accumulated some bits of organizational wisdom that help me wage war against the clutter. I hope you find it helpful in tackling the piles in your life.
I have a love/hate relationship with meetings.
I love them when they’re necessary.
I hate them when they’re full of unnecessary elements (like my presence).
I love them when they move us forward.
I hate them when they don’t move us any closer to our goal.
I love them when they take less time than allotted.
I hate them when they take more time than needed.
I love them when they clarify.
I hate them when they confuse.
I love them when I know what’s required of me at the end.
I hate them when I wonder why I was required to attend.
Meetings have to happen if we’re going to take a group of people and accomplish something worthwhile. The difficulty lies in knowing how to create meetings people will love rather than the kind people will hate.
The following is a guest post by Scott McGinty.
Look at a CEO of a fortune 500 company, get a sense of their personality, and then look at the CEO of a successful startup. Chances are, they’re going to be very different. One would have the mindset of relating to their employees and making a fun environment, after all, most start up’s have passionate CEO’s. Larger firms CEO’s will be more distant, and much more professional, with investors in mind. Either way though, the company leader’s identity and organizational psychology, helps guide the business foundation on vision, principles, strategy, goals and most of all, business communication.
Successful business leaders know how to keep moral high during the daily and sometimes mundane essential work that needs to be done to reach goals and finish projects efficiently and effectively.
This is a guest post by Lewis Jacobs, a free lance writer and social media specialist.
You’ve heard the phrase “natural born leader.” But what if you aren’t a natural born leader? How do you go about acquiring the skills and tools and the confidence to become a leader in your own right?
Hopefully, you are learning what it takes to be productive and to help those on your team to be productive as well. One way to increase your leadership “productivity” is to turn to social media and online communities. Where to turn though?
Project management is a skill every leader needs. Being a leader means being able to communicate effectively to a team, and that comes into play big time when you have a goal to meet. Basecamp is an online community where you can effectively manage projects from the development stage through the final product.
You can create projects, add checklists, start discussions with your team, upload multiple files to the same place and even keep your team informed with an updateable calendar.
Every now and then, ESPN will air the World Series of Poker. They play Texas Hold’Em for gobs of cash and bragging rights.
The most dramatic moments occur when one of the players at the table utters two words…
Most of the time, this means the player is putting all of his or her chips on the table. It’s typically an all or nothing move. Get the winning hand and you play on. Lose the hand and you’re done for the day.
You can feel the excitement and intensity rise in the room when those words are uttered. Sometimes a player will call “all in” because he is sure that his hand will win the round. Other times, a player knows this is a last ditch effort to remain in the game.
While I don’t know a lot about poker or all of the nuances to playing Texas Hold’em, I do know a little something about going “all in.”
One question that I’m often asked is whether or not I believe every person can be a leader?
My answer: yes and no.
I answer “yes” because I think every person has the potential and the responsibility to lead oneself well. I believe leadership does start with you. You and I must learn, practice, and hone our ability to lead our own selves well.
But I also answer “no.” Not everyone is equipped or capable of leading others well. While we all have some level of influence with those around us, it takes a special person to step up and inspire, organize, and move a group of people in a certain direction…together.
In a room full of people, I encourage everyone to lead themselves well. But not everyone will be called upon to be a leader of others.