I have attended hundreds of educational conferences and workshops during my career and I have seen a wide range of speakers. One of the best was Steve Gutzler, who delivered an excellent presentation at a court conference a few years ago about leadership and motivation. Steve also has a good blog,[i] and you can subscribe to his email list to get regular, short missives on leadership topics.[ii] In one of these emails a while back he gave some really good advice on how great leaders act, followed by a “Leadership Test” that is a good reality check for anyone.[iii]
Here is what Steve wrote:
How does a leader act? What are the key characteristics of a titled and untitled leader?
Remember, some of the best leaders lead without big titles.
- They believe they can positively shape their lives and careers
- They focus on great relationships with co-workers
- They collaborate and get along well with others.
- They adapt to change.
- They show respect and commitment to leaders and peers.
Leadership is being a positive influence– it’s how you show up.
Leadership is making a positive impact daily– it’s keeping your promises.
Leadership is inspiring others to greatness– it’s modeling great behaviors and beliefs.
The Leadership Test: YES or NO
1. You lead yourself first with solid healthy habits.
2. You refuse to play the “blame game”.
3. You look for ways to make your organization better each day.
4. You look for new opportunities to improve the customer experience.
5. You bring positive energy and positive emotions daily.
6. You solve problems, even those that are not in your “job description”.
7. You contribute to the betterment of others.
8. You show appreciation to peers, customers, and leaders.
9. You model personal drive and work with diligence and attention to detail.
10. You lead where you are and make your world better each day.
Score: You get a point for every YES. 8-10 = Excellent; 6-7 = Good; and <5 points = Average.
Remember, you don’t need a title or big position to do it. Lead where you are!
Now that’s a really great reality check for any leader! My thanks go to Steve Gutzler[i] for his great advice and continued writing and speaking on the importance of being a leader who makes a positive difference in one’s organization and the world.
[i] Find out more about Steve at his website: Steve Gutzler Leadership Keynote Speaker and Executive Coach
[iii] Subscribing to Steve’s emails is just one part of how I try to keep informed; I wrote about this in two prior Vantage Point blog posts: Tips for Staying Fresh (or, Don’t Get Left Behind!) — part one – Court Leader and Tips for Staying Fresh (or, Don’t Get Left Behind)! — part two – Court Leader