Have you ever heard—or asked—questions like these at work? “Who dropped the ball?” “Why can’t that department do its job right?” “When will we find good people?”
These questions lead us into the dangerous traps of blame, victim thinking, and procrastination—ones that leaders work hard to avoid while on the job.
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But what if the person asking these questions was also a parent and later returned to their family, asking: “Who made the mess in here?” “Why won’t he ever listen to me?” “When will my spouse help out more?”
When you’re in charge, it’s easy to get accustomed to having the people follow your wisdom simply because you’re the leader.
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But when was the last time you took a real risk, putting yourself out there with the possibility of failure? Have we become so used to leading that we’ve forgotten what it took to get us there?
The YMCA has a mission: to improve lives by strengthening spirit, mind and body. Coca Cola has a mission: to refresh the world. Star Trek even had a mission: to boldly go where no man has gone before!
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What about you and me? Could we do with mission statement for our marriages? Yes, and here’s why: Many of us enter into marriage somewhat blindly.
As believers, we recognize the value of imitating Jesus and His leadership style. But if we really think about it, it’s strange that we try to emulate a leader who never developed an organization, regularly encouraged people to stop following Him, and ultimately saw His death as the pinnacle of His accomplishments.
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What kind of perspective must a leader have to place high value on these kinds of strategies? Jesus was not a manager. His primary role was to function as a spiritual leader.
Last year was crazy. In six months, I received a publishing contract, started speaking for live audiences, and launched a writing career—all without having to quit my day job. How did it happen? I built a platform. But what does that mean?
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If you want to find and lead your “tribe,” you are going to have to be intentional about the process. The first place to start is with building relationships. I’ve cultivated three important habits that have helped me do this.
Tell me if this scenario sounds familiar. You hear the alarm clock go off in the morning. You just need a couple more minutes of sleep, so you hit the snooze button.
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Ten minutes later, the alarm clock goes off, but you’re already sound asleep. Thirty minutes later, you wake up in a panic. You just overslept and are going to be late.
You rush out of bed, throw on whatever you can find and head to the bathroom. You look at your toothbrush and tell yourself there’s no time. You gargle, grab whatever is in the fridge for lunch and you’re off.
It doesn’t matter whether your office is a boardroom, classroom, or laundry room. There are people who do things for you every day. Employees, colleagues, and family are expected to do their part. Do they know that you appreciate them?
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It was a typical Monday, and I was about to churn out a business-like email to my husband. Have you heard back from the tax guy? Don’t forget the teacher-parent conference on Thursday. Oh, and the neighbors are irritated because you put the recycle bin out on the wrong day.
In the middle of composing this gem of gentle reminders, a terrible realization came over me: I send a similar email to my husband every Monday. Imagine his excitement when my name appears in his inbox! I began to wonder. Does he know how much I appreciate him?
I love it when I get to spend time with my friend Randy Ingermanson who runs AdvancedFictionWriting.com. I always come away from our conversations challenged and changed.
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Our recent conversation happened in a hotel lobby in Dallas where he shared about something he learned about goal setting.
At a recent conference I attended, I heard someone say that the higher leaders advance in an organization, the less truth they receive.
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In the conversation that ensued, it was discussed how executives receive less feedback from their teams and organizations. This was attributed to positional authority, employee job security fears, and other organizational factors.
Rainy days. Flat tires. The worst case scenario. As the saying goes, it happens. And so does poor leadership.
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Leadership failures are often the result of:
- Poor planning
- Lack of vision
It happens more often than we would like to admit, especially when it is our fault.
We typically wait until the end of a person’s life to give a eulogy, to say nice things about someone. But why wait? Why not start now—when the words can have the most impact?
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Earlier this year, my family celebrated my father’s eightieth birthday. It was a fun celebration with friends and family.