Sharpen Your Saw: An Observation

On Sunday, I listened to a diverse group of young graduate students, soon to be professionals, share goals and objectives relative to the student organizations in which they hold leadership positions. As I observed, the principle that resonated with me was Sharpen Your Saw. I’ve long admired Stephen Covey’s The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw, is one that often hangs in my memory. Admittedly, I usually only think in terms of attempts to stay mentally sharp but in reality, and in short, this habit speaks to the need to continually utilize resources and tools that will strengthen your overall ability to be productive and be a part of the change that you desire to see. Sharpening the Saw is about renewal.

During this leadership retreat, which was set in a peaceful camp and retreat center area, these student leaders were able to address the four areas wherein sharpening is necessary for renewal: physical, social/emotional, spiritual, and mental. To participate in the retreat, they had to be willing to step away from the rigors of law school studies and refocus their energies towards planning, brainstorming, strategizing, networking, and synergizing. As a bonus, they also had a chance to enjoy nature and engage in physical activities. I do believe that both the individual and student organizations represented will be the better for it.

In closing, I have to give props where they are due, for I was truly an observer only in these efforts; I did absolutely nothing to make it happen. With that said, kudos to the dean of Campbell Law School, J. Rich Leonard, for making the retreat possible and his staff who took part to ensure its success. One more example of successful collaboration!  Until next time, take a moment to sharpen your saw.

#studentleaders  #CampbellLaw  #StephenCovey

A Thought on Personal Commitment

He who has done his best for his own time has lived for all times.” -Johann von Shiller, Playwright. Another quote I’ve borrowed from Dr. John Maxwell’s book, The 21 Indispensable Qualities of A Leader.

When I read it, I thought to myself, “That can be a definition of success…to have done your best for your own time, the time in which you lived and had an opportunity to impact people.” You know where this mindset stems from?…Commitment! Yep, commitment is key, for it can manifest in various ways, from the productive work hours we maintain, to self-improvement goals, to sacrifices we make for team members, family, and etc. Commitment isn’t entirely selfless, for in the long run, we find that as we commit to do the best that we can with the time, energy, and resources we have, we ourselves are greatly impacted and blessed. Our reach goes beyond our time.

Have you ever transitioned positions or jobs and later heard from prior team members that you are missed because_______ or they learned ______ from you and are using that to make a difference? Often, these little but consistent examples of commitment seem miniscule, but like children, little acts can have a huge impact. Therefore, I encourage you to continue with commitment, for though at times it seems to be moot, insignificant, or mundane, it has the opportunity to make a difference somehow, somewhere, to someone. Michelangelo never knew that his reluctant agreement to commit to paint a depiction on the Sistine Chapel would evolve into a masterpiece and proceed to bless millions of people over the centuries. You don’t know how your commitment will proceed to bless countless others and I encourage you not to dwell on that. Instead, dwell on doing the best you can with the time, energy, and resources at your disposal, and have that which you do be genuine, your actions be consistent, and your heart be at peace. Tootles!

#Commitment #Influence

The 90/10 Rule for Successful Organizations and Leadership

Noted this from a communication from the Raleigh,  NC Chamber of Commerce

The 90/10 Rule for successful organizations and I would dare say, leadership, is based on simple math — 90 percent of your attention should be on people development, with the remaining 10 percent devoted to the task.

Whether a for-profit, not-for-profit, corporation, school, church, or otherwise, let us NEVER forget that people matter.  Moreover, let us never forget to make sure they know that.  #peoplematter  #leadership  #success  #organizations

Leadership Personified

Another nugget from Dr. John C. Maxwell regards a few pointers that leaders personify.  To make yourself the kind of person who attracts others,

  1. Love life!  Why?, because people are drawn to those who genuinely enjoy life.  ‘Nuf said.
  2. Give people hope.  Why?, because hope is a gift and we all love to receive gifts. Seriously, leaders can be characterized as “dealers in hope.”  Bestow hope to others, and they will be grateful for their interaction with you.
  3. Put a “10” on every person’s head.  Why?, because it is always in a team’s best interests to know that their leader expects the best of them.  Whether they rise to the challenge is up to them, but as leaders, they must have a sure understanding that your expectation is excellence.  Dr. Maxwell says that expecting the best of others helps them think more highly of themselves, and at the same time, it also helps the leader.   I see this quite often with a wonderful lady named Rosie O’neal. She is a minister and in every interaction with her, she encourages.  As much as possible, she pours into people to help them reach their potential.  People far and near love her for it.
  4. Share yourself.  Why?, because people love REAL people.  People appreciate leaders who share of their victories as well as challenges, struggles, the good and the bad of their journeys.  Few people have reached a mountaintop without bruises.  Fewer people still are willing to follow and respect those who are too prideful to admit it.

#leaders  #character #realpeople

A Thought on Charisma

From “The 21 Indispensable Qualities of A Leader” by John C. Maxwell

How can you have charisma?  Be more concerned about making others feel good about themselves than you are making them feel good about you. ~Dan Reiland, Vice President of Leadership Development, INJOY

#charisma #leadership

Choose to Create Great Habits

I apologize but I cannot recall from whence I heard/read this statement, but it stayed with me.

“You make the choice to create great habits. Are your leadership habits today on par with your goals for tomorrow?”

#leadership #goals #choices #habits

P.S.  I need to apply this to working out.  I used to LOVE doing some form of a work out.  Will have to ponder my downward trajectory and attitude about the matter and make a decision to be more consistent.  Oy vay!  Meanwhile, I’ll celebrate having made the decision to consistently eat better a few years ago and staying with it.  Gotta celebrate the triumphs while working on improvements.

Character from the Inside Out

The below story is borrowed from Dr. John C. Maxwell.  Love it!

_______________________

A man took his young daughter to a carnival, and she immediately ran over to a booth and asked for cotton candy.  As the attendant handed her a huge ball of it, the father asked, “Sweetheart, are you sure you can eat all that?”

“Don’t worry, Dad,” she answered, “I’m a lot bigger on the inside than on the outside.”

That’s what real character is – being bigger on the inside.