Identity is how we view ourselves, reputation is how others view us. As the leader, which one is more important to you, because if you don't know the difference, you may be leading your people down the wrong path.

I don't subscribe to the theory that you need to confront negative behaviors in real time or they'll continue. There's more to it than that. It's about level of behavior, level of dysfunction created and opportunity for growth, both for the subordinate and for the leader. 

Your Leadership journey can't be all about comparing yourself to others. You may be chasing what seems to be an ideal version, but in fact is a flawed and an unrealistic version of you. If you let the world, or any one single person or ideal, set your standards for you, then you'll start low and stay there. 

I scan the environment every day in many ways. I scan people, events, specific media sources, my internal environment, the environmental sectors I work in-Nonprofit, For Profit, Education, Governmental, Community, etc. Why? Because I don't want to miss events or occurrences that might impact me in either a positive or, more importantly, a negative way. I also want to protect those in my charge, because they depend upon me to do so. 

I've noted often that Leadership is a paradox, meaning that it doesn't have a finite definition. It can be many things, even things that contradict each other, while at the same time making sense in a given situation. So, when people ask me what it takes to be a leader, I answer by telling sharing these 5 characteristics or behaviors leaders have that people gravitate towards. 

As devastating as the events of the past two decades have been, from the 2008 Recession, today's anniversary of 9/11 and the coronavirus pandemic era of today, they've all raised the bar for leadership. The days of delayed responses from leaders who can't answer the questions of what's next, why it's important and what to do about it, are over. Leaders today must be able to make decisions in an era of unpredictability over an indefinite period of time. 

I've talked before about young people with leadership potential being marginalized because the person they report to recognizes that potential and is threatened by them. It flies in the face of a fundamental principle of leadership, which is that any leader's success is a product of how well they treat their people. There are ways to recognize that potential quickly and there are ways to nourish it, as well. 

Despite everything that’s been written, translated, interpreted, clarified or defined, there are still no set rules or formulas for leaders to follow. You’ll find many guidelines, concepts, perceptions, ideas, abstractions and generalities from as many sources. It’s why the art of leadership is so difficult to master and to teach. It’s also why there is such a shortage of role models for others to follow, especially younger generations.

I learned recently that there are 5 types of political leaders, If you study the definitions of each, you'll find they're really not much different than those in the private sector. They just happen to be in government. The one point of significance here is that all of the definitions of politics for the most part imply negative connotations in terms of divisiveness, confrontation, power and status. Given today's environment, no surprises there! :)

In most leadership training, apologizing is not encouraged or even taught. Often, people think of apologizing as a sign of weakness or, worse, indecisiveness or a lack of confidence or courage. This couldn't be further from the truth.

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