While scanning through some of my earliest blog entries I came across one that had me reflect on the fundamental purpose of this blog: to inspire everyday leadership through everyday actions.
We may have an idea of what leadership is, but what does it look like in everyday action? In the post titled The Red Car Theory of Leadership I discuss the power of creating a context for observing leadership. The point is summed up in this paragraph:
“If our context for leading is limited to grand gestures like Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech we will miss leadership in its simplest, most elemental form. If we want to be able to seize an opportunity to act as a leader in any given moment we must be able to perceive the moments of opportunities or they will pass by unnoticed like all the cars you drive by every day, but don’t really see. And if we cannot see leadership in the actions of others, how will we be able to recognize it in ourselves?”
Often I work with people who do not see themselves as leaders, but say they want to become one. Yet it does not take long to observe them leading in the everyday things they do and say in service of their commitments. [click to continue...]
In honor of the 4th of July celebration in the United States I have been thinking about what freedom makes possible.
Perhaps the most famous line from the Declaration of Independence is this:
“We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
In drafting these words Thomas Jefferson intentionally downplayed protection of “property” as a goal of government, replacing the idea with “happiness.” He also chose the phrase “pursuit of happiness” rather than “to be happy”.
One very powerful avenue for pursuing happiness is to dream and actively pursue our dreams. And while we are not guaranteed success, by pursuing our dreams we do create the opportunity to live a life fueled by passion and enriched by a sense of meaning and purpose. [click to continue...]
A friend shared an unsettling story with me recently that highlights the perils of a poorly negotiated partnership agreement. I am sharing this story with you for two reasons.
One is because it is an important wake up call for anyone who is in or is considering forming a partnership. I cannot emphasize enough how critical it is to negotiate clear agreements up front, as well as continue to renegotiate over time as things change and evolve. All too often rigorous negotiation of partnership agreements gets put off for a variety of seemingly very good and compelling reasons at the time. I can speak from personal experience here – been there, done that and unfortunately learned the hard way. This is another reminder of just how important it is.
The other is because now, given a worst case scenario has occurred, I am very interested in your advice, insight and perspective regarding how these 4 people could navigate this very difficult territory. There is an incredible brain trust available among the readers of this blog from around the world. Your feedback here could make a big difference in how this turns out. [click to continue...]