Admittedly, my extra reading has been limited recently due to other priorities. That’s okay, I’ve still caught bits and pieces of some really great stuff lately such as:
What have you been reading lately?
I have had the privilege of interacting with many, many, many disciplines and departments recently. Each time, I have walked away thinking, “Man, what a great team!”
One person doesn’t make a team; numerous people do. Everyone has a skill, a part to contribute. And, excellence happens every single day – right in front of our eyes. Yet we choose not to see it because we aren’t really looking for it. Excellence has become the expectation, the norm; I assure you, it is not always the norm.
Point out the everyday excellence that is happening around you. Many people think they’re “just doing [their] jobs,” but recognize someone who does the excellent work every single day. And keep knocking your own work out of the park even if no one else sees it. It’ll come back around to you. It will.
Whether you believe love begins before it has explainable origins, at first sight, or grows over time – leaders’ love for their teams is the same. Do leaders actually love their teams? Yes.
It definitely gets stronger across time, but it often begins before the leader is actually the leader. You see, great leaders start dreaming and visioning as soon as the seed – any seed – about the future team or company is planted. They’ve often loved it and them before there was really anything or anyone to formally love.
I know. I have fallen in love many times. Without regret. And it’s powerful.
I just repainted several areas of my home. After seeing the finished product, I thought, “Wow, no one would ever know there’s a deep, rich gray underneath that new color.” My mind drifted to an art exhibit that showed, through some kind of imaging machine, how artists painted over their draft work to develop today’s masterpieces. “Huh…I never would have known that was under there…or even thought to look!” The very next day I had a conversation with a leader, and I learned a lot about her – some of her “shaping” and “refining” experiences (read: “painful”). I walked away thinking the same thing…”Huh, I would have never known that was under there.”
All leaders are amalgams of their past experiences. What’s incredibly interesting, though, is that all great leaders have some really painful experiences – moments that have defined their work as well as shifted their focuses – making them who they are and why they lead the way they do. It’s unfortunate that too few people really get to know their leaders and learn about those experiences. The great leaders are willing to share them. I assure you; they don’t want you to relive their past horror.
I hope you have the opportunity to have some of these discussions with the leaders around you. And, I hope you’re brave enough to share your leadership experiences with others in the process.
Leaders aren’t born. They’re made. Sometimes painfully.
Here’s a smidgen of what I’ve been reading (and watching) this week:
What have you been giving your attention to this week?