Not one week goes by where various topics of leadership is discussed, disputed and developed.
What is leadership? What does a leader look like to you? How do YOU demonstrate being a leader every day? What qualities do you possess that demonstrate leadership? (some interview questions to be aware of BTW) A LOT of questions to be answered with this subject.
It has been my experience that leaders are recognized by:
Age, social status, educational background achievements, how they communicate, position title, journey & experience, choices/decisions, and the list can go on. Being out of the corporate world now, I’ve realized that leadership is WAY MORE than external factors. The world needs more leaders just like YOU to take their journey into their own hands and create positive change. This also means not depending or relying on anyone else to figure it out for you, cause we both know that’s not going to happen.
NO ONE IS GOING TO SAVE YOU.
Studying the many successful 30 under 30 entrepreneurs and leaders over the years is something to think about. I was at a dinner one evening with a few people and one of my friends mentioned to me that she wants to start her own online business! Feeling ecstatic to hear this news because it is a similar and passionate journey of mine. She wants to get into health and wellness as a coach. This discussion brought upon a few different reactions from the generation above mine such as, “I know it sounds spoiled of me to think this way.” or “I feel like a millennial that just wants to work from home all day on my laptop in my pajamas.” or even “I’ve paid my dues working 20+ years so this new lifestyle should work for ME because I’ve earned it.” Listening to these reactions I completely understood how they felt even though our worlds and perceptions are a bit different. I decided to take control of this conversation because I began to see the emotion behind it. I said to the group, I think there has been a shift with this and YES the millennial generation is staying away or even leaving corporate 9-5 and INSTEAD building and creating their own businesses because we value different things. We don’t necessarily look at fancy cars and mortgages as ACHIEVEMENTS (mind you most of us can’t afford a mortgage or car) BUT we do have more options and possibilities now. Someone has paved the way for us to capitalize and reap the benefits of the online world more than before. I’ve seen people my age (not disclosing this) in their 20s manipulate Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snap Chat you name it to reach a wider net online audience and create high paying clients this way. Online presence is super influential and there are plenty of people out there looking for help and don’t even know that it exists. Untapped market because people who need help sometimes don’t even know they need it and creating an online brand connects certain messages that resonate with certain people.
I eventually finished the “you are not spoiled” rant and explained to the group that we now have far more choices to explore that are risky, yet extremely rewarding. I shifted this destructive & resentful emotion into positivity, hope and faith. I used to think that being a leader was for the big wigs with fancy offices that overlooked the CN Tower and came with a lake view. But that’s not it and certainly does not mean a great leader exists. (no offence to those that have a CN Tower & lake view)
Truthfully, prior to my new self, I really thought I didn’t have leadership qualities because previous experiences made me create false beliefs about myself that I wasn’t GOOD enough to lead or CAPABLE enough to be a leader or even have any strengths relating to it. Being a leader is taking control and action for your life, understanding personal responsibility, expressing yourself, making great decisions, self-confidence, BEING YOURSELF, having a strong desire to share gifts and talents to change the world for the better. LEADERS GENUINELY want to help others and lift them up. Despite what you may have seen and experienced in leadership, leaders want you to succeed. Trust me OK! Don’t wait for someone to give you direction and wait for life to happen to you because you have a choice. You have to do the internal work first and figure out your strengths and motivators. The time is NOW to start your action plan. Not tomorrow, next week, next month, NOW!
Don’t know how to get there? Feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free mini coaching session.
Helpful resources to discover your strengths I use in my coaching practice:
- Strengths Finder 2.0 by Tom Rath – click here
- Strengths Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams and Why People Follow – click here