Just last week I was able to attend a fraternity Undergrad Leadership Institute; 97 participants were selected and we all gained insights on what it takes to be a leader.
Throughout the week-long conference, we had many great speakers with different viewpoints on leadership. I’ve selected two points that were reiterated by various speakers there.
Leaders Inspire by Giving Back:
One of the first speakers, Lieutenant Colonel Larry D. Parker Jr. gave us an example that I will never forget.
Throughout his leadership in the Marines, he had never eaten a warm meal. Because he always let all of his team eat first.
Russell Stokes from General Electric gave back through various community service projects throughout his rise through the corporate world; further, he took time out of his schedule to speak to us. We were given the quote “A Leader who leaves behind his team, isn’t a leader.” A leader in his quest to achieve receives help, therefore he must give help back to those who follow. By doing so the leader makes his team better, resulting in him being better as well.
Leaders Inspire Through Work Ethic:
We were also fortunate enough to have Deb Elam speak to our group.
She told us a story from her earlier years at GE. One of her managers asked her to continue with current responsibilities and tackle a new project at the same time. She managed to do this by working every Saturday. Working every Saturday gives evidence that as a leader, she will be willing to lead her team by example, meaning they will have an easy standard to follow.
Through all of the articles I’ve read, Speakers I’ve heard, or leaders I’ve witnessed, the successful ones I could never call lazy.
Work ethic is a trait necessary for strong leadership.
I really enjoyed the speakers at our conference. I felt motivated to become a better version of myself.
How? One of my mentors advised me to look for those who made an impact on you, learn why, and incorporate it into your character.
By this, I don’t mean to copy someone, only to recognize a desirable trait and make it your own!
Leaders Inspirational Quotes:
- “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” —John Maxwell
- “Great leaders are not defined by the absence of weakness, but rather by the presence of clear strengths.” —John Zenger
- “Earn your leadership every day.” –Michael Jordan