FLASHPOINTS: Are You Leading Inspired Team?

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There’s no greater leverage than a compelling vision, and an inspired team to make it so.

If we don’t believe in ourselves, or in the people we work with, can we really call ourselves effective leaders? It takes guts to identify a need or shortcoming, and then make the choice to enhance or improve in that area. It takes even more courage to openly share our vision, and to bring together a powerful and purposeful team to conquer our goals.  Let’s slow down for a second and consider that confidence, vision, and authenticity are traits in leaders that people find attractive. And since people like to be good, and they like to do good, it’s our responsibility to leverage that desire, and communicate effectively to do great things.  It’s our belief in our team, and in their potential, that empowers & enables them to multiply our efforts and impact. Are you leading an inspired team?


FLASHPOINTS: Who Inspires You On To Greatness?

When you find someone who
inspires you to be a better person,
let them know & never let them go!

It seems that authenticity and genuine leadership rarely intersect anymore, so it’s tough to identify that role model who excites us about life and reaching for our fullest potential.  Whereas mentors can be found in the writings & recordings of those long since passed, the rules for this scenario are they have to be alive, contactable, and worthy of emulation!  Personally, I find it difficult to find all the great traits that inspire me wrapped up in one person, so I admire specific traits in specific people.  When you admire someone, let them know…don’t keep that gift of encouragement to yourself.  Sometimes a simple word of thanks can fuel the next great breakthrough. Everyone needs a cheerleader, even our heroes and role models. Who inspires you on to greatness?

FLASHPOINTS: 1…2…3…Smile!!

You’ll have a tough time excelling as a leader if you’re a prickly personality.

People look to leaders for guidance—more than that, they seek inspiration & often have high expectations of those at the helm.  It can become quite a responsibility; and some deal with the associated stress better than others.  My way of dealing with leadership demands is to be completely grateful, flexible, and try (as best I can) to be pleasant to work with.  Nothing particularly fancy or complicated there, just being aware of myself with a focus on treating the team with the respect they deserve goes a long way.  When we show our gratitude, and don a smile while dealing with pressure, it gets noticed & encourages teammates to go the extra mile—and it makes life just a little more bearable.  Take a chill pill, dude…and smile!

FLASHPOINTS: What Are Your Team Members Passionate About?

Passion ignites the fire in our bellies, and drives us to dream of expanded horizons beyond our fears & failures.

Everyone on your team has a particular role & each has their own personal passion. It’s these passions and interests that you must identify in order to create a team that is totally on fire! What is it that attracted your team members to their particular roles? Is it direct customer interaction, is it writing, is it finding creative solutions?  Ask them!  When our roles evolve in business, sometimes the very thing that excites us to begin with is no longer a focus.  As a leader, it’s our task to ensure each member of our team is successful—one of the best ways to do this is to create an environment where they are in love with their roles and working with passion. What are your team members passionate about?

Leaders Are Readers: Questions of Character By Joseph L. Badaracco

Do you remember the game Follow The Leader from kindergarden? At a young age we are instilled with the inherent desire to lead. BUT, is everyone ready to be on the front lines? Is everyone ready to be the one making all the major decisions?

Leaders face challenges each and every day. The toughest of these challenges are the ones that not only test our skill but question our character. (test their skill and question their character). In Joseph L. Badaracco’s, Questions of Character we get an inside look at the eight fundamental challenges that test any leader’s character. Comprehensive research was done on classic fictional movies such as The Death of a Salesman, The Secret Sharer and The Last Tycoon. Badaracco uses these stories and “many others” to address the complex issues leaders face.

Each chapter provides serious questions that we, as leaders, must all ask ourselves. Including:

▪   Do I really care?

▪   Am I ready to take responsibility?

▪   Can I resist the flow of success?

▪   How well do I combine principles and pragmatism?

▪   What is sound reflection?

A crucial theme Badaracco stresses is:

A good leader must have a balance of internal self-consciousness and external comparisons.

Addition leadership themes covered include:

▪   Leaders are responsible for other people but they are also responsible for themselves.

▪   Leadership doesn’t stop when you leave the office It stays with you in all aspects of life.

▪   Our character and reputation determine who we are as leaders.

In most situations in life, there’s the option to be a follower or a leader. Which one will you choose? Will you rise to the occasion with your character intact or will you stumble or falter?

Questions of character is an excellent guide to further develop your leadership strengths. Pick a copy up today and let us know what you think.

Buy The Book

FLASHPOINTS: Are You At Peace With Your Leadership Style?

Leaders are not moral-bound to infuse others with greatness. The greatest of leaders, however, tap the fountain of greatness found deep within us all.   

At some point on your journey you’ll find yourself questioning who you are and whether you’ve made the right choices.  Sure, it helps at times to reflect and be critical of yourself and the choices you’ve made—this can sharpen your edge, create positive change, and foster new opportunities.  But, before you get too critical, remember there’s honor in strong and selfless leadership.  Be sure not to think too much about how things could’ve been if you had made your choices differently.  It’s a destructive waste of time—and you can’t go back and change what you did yesterday.  Instead, look toward the future—take responsibility for your choices, and keep reminding yourself of the privilege it is to be a leader.  Are you at peace with your leadership style?

FLASHPOINTS: Can You Handle The Truth?

The truth hurts: Every worthy goal requires sacrifice, suffering and struggle.

Exceptional leaders accept that saying “no” or “not now” to family & friends, because of a project crisis, as a crying shame—but a necessary evil—from time to time.  Sadly, some wear their no’s, their continued sleepless nights and their neglected health issues as a badge of honor—rather than accepting them as self-inflected wounds due to a broken business or leadership model.  I wish I could tell you that things will get easier, or that you’ll find your own work/life nirvana.  Here’s the truth: most leaders & entrepreneurs leave a trail of broken personal relationships in their path—but it need not be so.  Real sacrifice comes from the really hard work of protecting and prioritizing personal relationships and obligations against the revolving door of business and project crisis.  Can you handle the truth?

LEADERS ARE READERS: The Twelve Absolutes of Leadership By Gary Burnison

Leadership is the eight wonder of the world – easy to intellectualize, but elusive to actualize!”

– Gary Burnison.

With true leadership lacking in virtually spectrum of society today – political, economic, and spiritual – The Twelve Absolutes of Leadership by Gary Burnison (CEO of Korn/Ferry International, the world’s largest executive search firm) is both timely and insightful.  Drawing on real-world experience, Burnison outlines the complexities of understanding the real meaning of leadership and offers a powerful framework model; the “Guiding Principles of Leadership.”

Burnison covers twelve “absolutes” of leadership, devoting a chapter to each.  They include:

  1. Lead
  2. Purpose
  3. Strategy
  4. People
  5. Measure
  6. Empower
  7. Reward
  8. Anticipate
  9. Navigate
  10. Communicate
  11. Listen
  12. Learn

Burnison ascribes to the oft-quoted – but seldom followed – adage that “an effective leader must be able to understand the past and the present to lead properly into the future.” He firmly believes that any organization that wants to create enduring success in today’s challenging business environment must have extraordinary leadership that presents a clear vision, provides inspiration, and “walks the walk.”

It can be difficult to present such lofty ideals in an engaging, easily understandable manner.  Burnison does so very effectively, making The Twelve Absolutes of Leadership a great read for leaders – and aspiring leaders – of any organization!

Have you read this book? Leave a comment and let us know what you think!

FLASHPOINTS: Bring Out The Best In Your Team!

iListen.  iLearn.  iLead.

You might be a leader, but you don’t have all the answers all the time.  Leadership involves listening, collaboration, partnerships, and team building.   Sure, you may very well be the go-to, answer-person; but it’s quite likely your teammates have the answers within themselves already.  This is interesting for two reasons.  Firstly, because contrary to popular belief, leaders don’t have all the answers, even though they attract all the questions (and problems)!  Secondly, it should come as a big relief that, as a leader, all you actually need to do well is empower your team to believe in themselves and their own judgment.  It sure takes the pressure off having to be right all the time, doesn’t it?  How do you bring out the best in your team?