Leaders are often seen as being charismatic people who are always at the forefront and responsible for the success of their businesses. But success rests in the efforts of everyone else in the business, and the core of leadership is to engage and activate the combined talents and energy of everyone else.
Active Knowledge Question:
Who or what do you believe underpins the success of your business?
At the very core of a person are two traits that I believe drive all else in the individual, including their values and motives. They are humility and gratitude, and in seeking a worthy leader, you must ensure that these traits are evident. They allow the critical traits that we discussed last week to form and also underpin your ability to engage and activate the combined talents and energy within your business. Here’s why:
Humility is a virtuous strength that allows you to place someone else before yourself, to uplift and invest in them. It is not a sign of weakness or lack of ambition, but rather a willingness to hold power in the service of others and I believe a significant personal strength.
It is reflected in the business leader who places the business, its employees, and its customers before themselves. It allows that business leader to promote the strengths of everyone else involved in the business and to lead it to greatness by not placing their self-interest at the forefront.
Humility allows you to learn and be grateful, to not take yourself too seriously, to seek continuous improvement, to take failure in your stride, and to work with the best, at their best.
It is a foundational trait upon which all else can be built as it allows you to be open to continuous improvement and learning and to win the trust, support and effort of everyone you work with. Humble people are the greatest leaders.
From the core of humility, you are able to look upon everything with thanks. You are able to wake up each morning with a positive outlook on life and with an excitement about what the day will hold and what you can achieve. It’s not about seeing everything through a false lens but instead about viewing life with a lens that looks for opportunity – that creates a positive energy. I call this an ‘attitude of gratitude’.
If you are grateful in your life, you will be a person who gives. If you are a person who has thanks and giving as core traits, then positivity is generated, and success will flow. You may want to say it’s the universe or God blessing you, but do good things, and good things will happen to you is my experience.
As a leader, I need and want to come to work every day with a positive attitude that will infect everyone around me. I want all other leaders to do the same.
In leadership, be very deliberate about the type of person whom you will accept as a leader in your business, including yourself. In this respect, your personal traits of wisdom, courage and discipline become critical in ensuring only worthy leaders exist in your business.
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All the best in the success of your business,