Living the Lessons in Leadership

Years ago, I was encouraged to participate in a women's leadership program at a local university. What I took away from that experience is a lesson that I try to practice every day, using the term "leadership" as the basis for what it means and how to practice it:

L iving to

E ngage and encourage others to

A spire to personal greatness through constructive and

D ynamic dialogue, drawing on the best in us to

E ffortlessly pursue extraordinary outcomes, be

R ole models, and

S et an example, surpassing obstacles to offer

H ope and help to others; to do so with honesty and

I ntegrity; to possess and share insights/visions that inspire the achievement of

P urpose, presence, positivity, and infinite possibilities.

To me, these words are a powerful reminder of what one can achieve through strong and effective leadership. It is not about personal power or gain; it is really about a selfless, outward focus on the best for others, prompting exceptional results. As stated, it is about providing an example, being honest and true to oneself, conducting oneself with integrity, and thereby motivating others to follow -- all the while coaxing out the best in them.

There is a significant difference between being a good leader and being a good manager in the business world, but this distinction often gets blurred or overlooked. Strong and impactful leadership happens naturally and creates a nurturing opportunity that yields a win-win situation for all -- seeing perceived obstacles as opportunities and challenges as chances to positively influence outcomes for the better.

Leadership is a quality -- a special gift to be used wisely. It is not a title or a status within an organizational hierarchy. The beauty of it is that it is an innate characteristic that anyone at any level, regardless of talents, education, background, knowledge, skills, salary, or financial means, can possess and offer. Let your inner leader shine forth, and learn what awesomeness lies ahead.

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