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ersonal Leadershlp Agenda

1o use my sLrengLhs ln organlzed goal based sLrucLured and vlslble leadershlp Lo encourage
an envlronmenL of growLh lnnovaLlon and success so LhaL myself and oLhers are empowered
Lo freely pursue and achleve personal saLlsfacLlon wlLhln our respecLlve careers
referred Leadershlp Model
As an lS1! l am pracLlcal and reallsLlc and l respecL facLs and sLandardlzed procedures
As such lL ls no surprlse LhaL my preferred leadershlp model ls Lhe SLrucLural lramework
model also referred Lo as Lhe lacL 8ased Leader or 1ype A leader Common characLerlsLlcs of
Lhls Lype of leader whlch resonaLe wlLh me lnclude well deflned Lask and loglc based goal
seLLlng a focus on sLrucLure and sLraLegy success by organlzaLlon and research and loglcal
order 1hls Lype of leadershlp model can be effecLlve because goals are well deflned
Lechnologles and lnformaLlon are sLrong and Lhere ls a sLable leglLlmaLe auLhorlLy l can use
Lhls Lype of leadershlp model Lo lnsplre oLhers by maklng goals and paLhs deflned and Lhus
easler Lo ldenLlfy and compleLe ln addlLlon by maklng goals and paLhs hlghly vlslble Lo
everyone lL promoLes honesLy when l or oLhers fall Lo do whaL ls necessary Lo achleve Lhem
My organlzed sLrucLured approach based on facLs and knowledge ls my greaLesL sLrengLh
ln my currenL role as Chlef of SLaff aL CpLlLlnk l work wlLh many vlslonary and creaLlve
leaders As such Lhere ls ofLen a lack of organlzaLlon and sLrucLure whlch leads Lo Lhe fallure of
good ldeas A challenge we face on a regular basls ls wasLed Llme and efforL puL lnLo new ldeas
or paLhways because a vlslonary leader has come up wlLh a good ldea buL lacks Lhe
organlzaLlon and sLablllLy requlred Lo analyze Lhe value of Lhe new ldea and seL up a reallsLlc
framework for achlevlng lL My anchored personallLy and facL based sLrucLured approach
provldes balance Lo Lhls aLmosphere and ofLen provldes a much needed reallLy check
l recognlze LhaL l also dlsplay some of Lhe shorLcomlngs of Lhls leadershlp sLyle
SomeLlmes my Lask based deLall orlenLed leadershlp sLyle can be percelved as Lyrannlcal or
devold of feellng ln addlLlon my need for facLs and sLrucLure make me slow Lo acL and noL a
rlsk Laker My hlgh expecLaLlons for myself and oLhers can be percelved as crlLlcal and
[udgmenLal and ln facL probably are l flnd myself crlLlclzlng myself Lo oLhers Lo Lry Lo sofLen
Lhe blow of my crlLlque of Lhem SomeLlme l geL upseL when Lhlngs aren'L done by Lhe book"
and l fall Lo respond approprlaLely Lo oLhers needs
1hree areas l have ldenLlfled for myself Lo work on Lo help wlLh Lhese shorLcomlngs are
composure poslLlve lmpacL and lnformal communlcaLlon ueveloplng my composure wlll allow
me Lo conLlnue performlng sLeadlly and effecLlvely when Lhlngs don'L go as planned l have
heard before LhaL l show my sLress on my face lL ls lmporLanL LhaL l learn Lo conLrol my faclal
expresslons so LhaL l don'L polson Lhe envlronmenL wlLh unnecessary angsL oslLlve lmpacL
also poslLlve aLLlLude can Lurn my propenslLy for hlgh expecLaLlons lnLo hlgh regard lnsLead of
percelved crlLlclsm lf l comblne developmenL ln Lhese Lwo areas wlLh lmproved lnformal
communlcaLlon l can reduce and hopefully someday ellmlnaLe Lhe negaLlve aLLrlbuLes of my
leadershlp sLyle
laLform of 8ellefs
A plaLform ls a base Lo sLand on As a leader l wlsh Lo sLand on four plllars of quallLy
lnsplraLlon eople wanL Lo be lnsplred and wlll follow a leader wllllng who can lnsplre Lhem l
am noL Lhe Lype of person who has lnsplrlng ground breaklng ldeas abouL Lhe fuLure l do
however have vlslons abouL Lhe fuLure anchored ln reallLy Seelng Lhe blg plcLure and helplng
oLher flnd Lhemselves ln lL provldes a way for people Lo dlscover Lhe meanlng ln Lhelr work
8esearch shows LhaL employees who flnd Lhelr work Lo be meanlngful are more producLlve and
happler ln Lhelr work lnsplraLlonal leaders are ofLen good publlc speakers who can
communlcaLe ldeas effecLlvely l am a good publlc speaker and when l buy lnLo an ldea l am
exLremely loyal and can be lLs greaLesL advocaLe My selecLlvlLy ln buy ln prevenLs me from
belng percelved as a salesperson
lalrness ulLlmaLely rooLed ln honesLy belng falr was ldenLlfled by ulke uame of Wllllam and
uame ln Su's wlnLer quarLer 2011 LxecuLlve 8rleflngs course as belng Lhe mosL lmporLanL
leadershlp quallLy Lo have 1hls resonaLed wlLh me l value falrness above all oLher
managemenL LralLs arL of belng falr ls openly demonsLraLlng Lhls LralL so LhaL everyone knows
you are falr lalr leaders make Lhe rlghL declslon every Llme regardless of personal feellngs
Lmployees LrusL falr leaders When you are falr you don'L have Lo hlde anyLhlng and people
respecL you When employees percelve unfalr LreaLmenL Lhey can become blLLer angry and as
a resulL unproducLlve
lnLelllgence lnLelllgence ls Lhe rooL of confldence ?ou cannoL lead wlLhouL confldence because
no one wlll wanL Lo follow lnLelllgence ls also Lhe rooL of many operaLlonal skllls WlLhouL
knowledge of Lhe lndusLry you work ln you cannoL make Lhe besL declslons for your fuLure l
respecL lnLelllgence and wanL Lo dlsplay my own lnLelllgence ln such a way LhaL oLhers respecL
me as well Cne way l can demonsLraLe my lnLelllgence wlLhouL belng percelved as arroganL ls
by asklng quesLlons and learnlng from oLhers ulke uame as menLloned above recommended
hlrlng people who are smarLer Lhan yourself so LhaL you can learn from Lhem
Lconomlc Success 1he mosL vlslble and physlcally measureable LralL of good leadershlp
CorporaLe and personal economlc successes are Lhe physlcal proof of compeLenL lnLelllgenL
leadershlp ln falrness economlc success of a corporaLlon should be shared wlLh Lhose who
conLrlbuLe Lo achlevlng lL arL of my personal agenda ls Lo promoLe LhaL all employees and
lnvesLors are rewarded for Lhelr parL ln achlevlng economlc successes
ersonal vlslon
1he reallLy of Lhe world we llve ln ls LhaL human adulLs worklng full Llme spend over half of Lhelr
waklng hours aL Lhelr [ob WlLh Lhe reLlremenL age lncreaslng regularly Lhe amounL of Llme
spenL worklng ln a career seems Lo be lncreaslng 1hls Llme commlLmenL ls a compelllng reason
Lo need wanL and even demand LhaL our careers and work envlronmenLs be a poslLlve place ln
our llves As a leader now and an asplrlng fuLure leader lL ls my responslblllLy Lo myself and
oLhers Lo noL hlnder Lhe pursulL of en[oyable growLh orlenLed successful work envlronmenLs
and careers ln addlLlon lL ls my responslblllLy Lo use Lhe skllls l have and Lhe skllls l wlll acqulre
Lo promoLe Lhls envlronmenL and conLrlbuLe Lo my own success my coworker's success and
my company's success
Changlng Lhe Worldan opLlonal addlLlon Lo Lhls dlscusslon
Whlle l don'L know how Lo change Lhe world l do have ldeas abouL how lL needs Lo change for
Lhe beneflL of everyone My Pogan AssessmenL sLaLed LhaL l don'L have poLenLlal as a leader
because l don'L know whaL l wanL Lo be and lacklng Lhls clarlLy ln my own llfe dlmlnlshes my
capaclLy Lo be a leader l would llke Lo address LhaL here by admlLLlng LhaL l don'L know whaL
speclflc career paLh l wanL Lo be on havlng had llmlLed exposure Lo Lhe wealLh of posslblllLles
avallable l do however have vlslons for a beLLer world
O 8ecognlze and acknowledge LhaL Lhe caplLallsm buslness model ls broken
O AdvocaLe for a falr dlsLrlbuLlon of wealLh by reallgnlng wages wlLh worker conLrlbuLlon
O LllmlnaLe Lhe producLlon of unnecessary goods (reduces polluLlon) and redlsLrlbuLe
labor (reduces unemploymenL) We could ellmlnaLe much lndusLrlal polluLlon and conserve
our preclous dwlndllng resources by ellmlnaLlng Lhe 30 of lndusLry LhaL ls produclng noLhlng
useful for socleLy" (SmlLh 1989)
O ShorLen Lhe work week whlch sLudles show wlll lncrease producLlvlLy llfe and work saLlsfacLlon
and overall well belng We could all work 23 days per week wlLh no drop ln our llvlng
sLandard" (SmlLh 1994)
1he maln porLlon of Lhls dlscusslon was focused on whaL l am now and aLLalnable goals for Lhe
near fuLure and Lhe laLLer 4 polnLs are a dlscusslon of lofLler goals whlch l may or may noL see ln my
llfeLlme l can however ensure LhaL my personal leadershlp sLyle and operaLlons sLrucLure promoLes
Lhese values whenever feaslble

SmlLh !W (1989) 1be wotlJs wosteJ weoltb kallspell M1 new Worlds ress
SmlLh !W (1994) WasLed Llme wasLed wealLh lo cootext A Iootool of nomooe 5ostolooble coltote

For the most part, people will notice iI you are intelligent by observing your behavior and
attitude. Trying to display your intelligence is likely to be counterproductive. One oI the greatest
signs oI someone who is truly intelligent is humility. The greater your education, the greater your
understanding oI how little we really understand.
You can demonstrate your stiointelligence by gently leading people toward understandingeven
when you know the answer. Your Iocus needs to be on helping others learnnot demonstrating
how smart you are. Arrogance will put you in a position where people are secretly hopeIul that
you`ll make a mistake and appear Ioolish.
As unintuitive as it may seem, one oI the best ways to exhibit intelligence is by asking questions.
Learning Irom the people you lead by asking intelligent thoughtIul questions will do more to
enhance your intelligence credibility than just about anything. OI course this means you need to
be capable oI asking intelligent questions
the big picture and helping them see beyond a narrow Iocus and understand how theirpart Iits
into the big picture

In the wild, animals destined to lead are born with the qualities necessary to do so: strength,
Iertility, physical condition. As adults, they must outwardly prove their leadership, sometimes
by Iighting to deIend it. As a result oI the natural born traits combined with proven strength and
success, a leader is easily recognizable, both among his own species and to outside species
observing Irom aIar. An animal Ialls into his role as a leader naturally, with skills that came with
instinct, and other animals recognize these qualities and Iollow the leader instinctually. In the
same way, the best human leaders are a result oI having deeply ingrained leadership qualities
combined with a proven track record. My desire is that my ability to lead will be sonatural that
othes recognize me as a leader instinctually, and don`t mind.
1he SLrucLural framework would be effecLlve because Lhe goals of Lhe deparLmenL are well deflned Lhe
Lechnologles are sLrong and Lhere ls a sLable leglLlmaLe auLhorlLy 1he focus would be on Lask and loglc
noL personallLy and emoLlons
1he SLrucLural lramework suggesLs a leader ls a soclal archlLecL 1helr focus ls oan sLrucLure sLraLegy
envlronmenL lmplemenLaLlon experlmenLaLlon and adapLaLlon 1helr sLyle ls analysls and deslgn Lo
achleve Lhelr goals Powever when Lhe leadershlp slLuaLlon ls lneffecLlve Lhey can become peLLy
LyranLs whose focus ls on deLal
1ypeA (lacL 8ased) leaders are comforLable wlLh people Lasks and envlronmenLs LhaL requlre facLs
loglc Lheorles sclenLlflc appllcaLlons analysls quanLlLaLlve maLhemaLlcal and Lechnlcal processes Lo
resolve 1hey esLabllsh hlgh quanLlLaLlve sLandards of behavlor and expecLaLlons for employees and
Lhemselves 1hey rarely show emoLlon because Lhey are more lnLeresLed ln Lhe boLLom llne Moreover
Lhey are consLanLly seeklng facLs and Lhe loglcal order of Lhlngs 1hey are very organlzed research
orlenLed and daLa drlven ln declslonmaklng Conversely Lhey are exLremely crlLlcal of lndlvlduals who
do noL meeL Lhelr expecLaLlons and sLandards 1hey conLlnuously seek perfecLlon ln Lhemselves and
oLhers 1hey are formal ln appearance whlle malnLalnlng a conservaLlve sLyle 1hey prefer Lo Lhlnk
abouL problems before aLLempLlng Lo solve Lhem 1hey are slow Lo acL 1hey place ma[or emphasls on
Lhe [ob or Lasks relaLed Lo Lhe [ob Accuracy above all else ls Lhe number one prlorlLy
Some sit and pontiIicate about whether leaders are made or born. The true leader ignores such
arguments and instead concentrates on developing the leadership qualities necessary Ior success.
In this article, we are going to discuss Iive leadership traits or leadership qualities that people
look Ior in a leader. II you are able to increase your skill in displaying these Iive quality
characteristics, you will make it easier Ior people to want to Iollow you. The less time you have
to spend on getting others to Iollow you, the more time you have to spend reIining exactly where
you want to go and how to get there.
The Iive leadership traits/leadership qualities are:
1. Honest
2. orward-Looking
3. ompetent
4. nspiring
5. ntelligent
These Iive qualities come Irom Kouzes and Posner`s research into leadership that was done Ior the book The
Leadership Challenge.
Your skill at exhibiting these Iive leadership qualities is strongly correlated with people`s desire
to Iollow your lead. Exhibiting these traits will inspire conIidence in your leadership. Not
exhibiting these traits or exhibiting the opposite oI these traits will decrease your leadership
inIluence with those around you.
It is important to exhibit, model and display these traits. Simply possessing each trait is not
enough; you have to display it in a way that people notice. People want to see that you actively
demonstrate these leadership qualities and will not just assume that you have them. It isn`t
enough to just be neutral. For example, just because you are not dishonest will not cause people
to recognize that you are honest. Just avoiding displays oI incompetence won`t inspire the same
conIidence as truly displaying competence.
The Iocus oI each oI these Iive traits needs to be on what people see you donot just the things
they don`t see you do. Being honest isn`t a matter oI not lyingit is taking the extra eIIort to
display honesty.
Honesty as a Leadership Quality
People want to Iollow an honest leader. Years ago, many employees started out by assuming that
their leadership was honest simply because the authority oI their position. With modern scandals,
this is no longer true.
When you start a leadership position, you need to assume that people will think you are a little
dishonest. In order to be seen as an honest individual, you will have to go out oI your way to
display honesty. People will not assume you are honest simply because you have never been
caught lying.
One oI the most Irequent places where leaders miss an opportunity to display honesty is in
handling mistakes. Much oI a leader`s job is to try new things and reIine the ideas that don`t
work. However, many leaders want to avoid Iailure to the extent that they don`t admit when
something did not work.
There was a medium size organization that was attempting to move to a less centralized
structure. Instead oI one location serving an entire city, they wanted to put smaller oIIices
throughout the entire metro area. At the same time, they were planning an expansion Ior
headquarters to accommodate more customers at the main site. The smaller remote oIIices was
heralded as a way to reach more customers at a lower cost and cover more demographic areas.
AIter spending a considerable amount oI money on a satellite location, it became clear that the
cost structure would not support a separate smaller oIIice. As the construction completed on the
expanded headquarters building, the smaller oIIice was closed. This was good decision making.
The smaller oIIices seemed like a good idea, but when the advantages didn`t materialize (due to
poor management or incorrect assumptions) it made sense to abandon the model. This was a
chance Ior the leadership to display honesty with the employees, be candid about why things
didn`t work out as expected, learn Irom the mistakes an move on.
UnIortunately in this situation the leadership told employees that they had planned on closing the
satellite location all along and it was just a temporary measure until construction was completed
on the larger headquarters building. While this wasn`t necessarily true, it didn`t quite cross over
into the area oI lying. Within a Iew months the situation was mostly Iorgotten and everyone
moved on. Few oI the employees Ielt that leadership was being dishonest. However, they had
passed up a marvelous opportunity to display the trait oI honesty in admitting a mistake.
Opportunities to display honesty on a large scale may not happen every day. As a leader,
showing people that you are honest even when it means admitting to a mistake, displays a key
trait that people are looking Ior in their leaders. By demonstrating honesty with yourselI, with
your organization and with outside organizations, you will increase your leadership inIluence.
People will trust someone who actively displays honestynot just as an honest individual, but as
someone who is worth Iollowing.
orward-Looking as a Leadership Trait
The whole point oI leadership is Iiguring out where to go Irom where you are now. While you
may know where you want to go, people won`t see that unless you actively communicate it with
them. Remember, these traits aren`t just things you need to have, they are things you need to
actively display to those around you.
When people do not consider their leader Iorward-looking, that leader is usually suIIering Irom
one oI two possible problems:
1. The leader doesn`t have a Iorward-looking vision.
2. The leader is unwilling or scared to share the vision with others.
When a leader doesn`t have a vision Ior the Iuture, it usually because they are spending so much
time on today, that they haven`t really thought about tomorrow. On a very simplistic level this
can be solved simply by setting aside some time Ior planning, strategizing and thinking about the
Many times when a leader has no time to think and plan Ior the Iuture, it is because they are
doing a poor job oI leading in the present. They have created an organization and systems that
rely too much on the leader Ior input at every stage.
Some leaders have a clear vision, but don`t wish to share it with others. Most oI the time they are
concerned that they will lose credibility iI they share a vision oI the Iuture that doesn`t come
about. This is a legitimate concern. However, people need to know that a leader has a strong
vision Ior the Iuture and a strong plan Ior going Iorward. Leaders run into trouble sharing their
vision oI the Iuture when they start making promises to individuals. This goes back to the trait oI
honesty. II a leader tells someone that 'next year I`m going to make you manager oI your own
division, that may be a promise they can`t keep. The leader is probably basing this promotion
on the organization meeting Iinancial goals, but the individual will only hear the personal
An organization I was working with was Iloundering. It seemed like everyone had a diIIerent
idea about what they were trying to achieve. Each department head was headed in a diIIerent
direction and there was very little synergy as small IieIdoms and internal politics took their toll.
Eventually a consulting Iirm was called in to help Iix the problem. They analyzed the situation,
talked to customers, talked to employees and set up a meeting with the CEO. They were going to
ask him about his vision Ior the Iuture. The employees were excited that Iinally there would be a
report stating the direction Ior the organization.
AIter the meeting, the consultants came out shaking their heads. The employees asked how the
important question had gone to which the consultants replied, 'we asked him, but you aren`t
going to like the answer. The CEO had told the consultant that, while he had a vision and plan
Ior the Iuture, he wasn`t going to share it with anyone because he didn`t want there to be any
disappointment iI the goals were not reached.
Leaders can communicate their goals and vision Ior the Iuture without making promises that they
may not be able to keep. II a leader needs to make a promise to an individual, it should be tied to
certain measurable objectives being met. The CEO in the example didn`t realize how much
damage he was doing by not demonstrating the trait oI being Iorward-looking by communicating
his vision with the organization.
The CEO was Iorward-looking. He had a plan and a vision and he spent a lot oI time thinking
about where the organization was headed. However, his Iear oI communicating these things to
the rest oI the organization hampered his leadership potential.
ompetency as a Leadership Quality
People want to Iollow someone who is competent. This doesn`t mean a leader needs to be the
Ioremost expert on every area oI the entire organization, but they need to be able to demonstrate
For a leader to demonstrate that they are competent, it isn`t enough to just avoid displaying
incompetency. Some people will assume you are competent because oI your leadership position,
but most will have to see demonstrations beIore deciding that you are competent.
When people under your leadership look at some action you have taken and think, 'that just goes
to show why he is the one in charge, you are demonstrating competency. II these moments are
inIrequent, it is likely that some demonstrations oI competency will help boost your leadership
Like the other traits, it isn`t enough Ior a leader to be competent. They must demonstrate
competency in a way that people notice. This can be a delicate balance. There is a danger oI
drawing too much attention to yourselI in a way that makes the leader seem arrogant. Another
potential danger is that oI minimizing others contributions and appearing to take credit Ior the
work oI others.
As a leader, one oI the saIest ways to 'toot you own horn without blowing it, is to celebrate and
bring attention to team achievements. In this way you indirectly point out your competency as a
leader. For example: 'Last year I set a goal oI reaching $12 million in sales and, thanks to
everyone`s hard word, as oI today, we have reached $13.5 million.
nspiration as a Leadership Trait
People want to be inspired. In Iact, there is a whole class oI people who will Iollow an inspiring
leadereven when the leader has no other qualities. II you have developed the other traits in this
article, being inspiring is usually just a matter oI communicating clearly and with passion. Being
inspiring means telling people how your organization is going to change the world.
A great example oI inspiration is when Steve Jobs stole the CEO Irom Pepsi by asking him, 'Do
you want to sell sugar water Ior the rest oI your liIe, or do you want to change the world? Being
inspiring means showing people the big picture and helping them see beyond a narrow Iocus and
understand how their part Iits into the big picture.
One technique to develop your ability to inspire is telling stories. Stories can be examples Irom
your customers, Iictitious examples Irom your customers, or even historical Iables and myths.
Stories can help you vividly illustrate what you are trying to communicate. Stories that
communicate on an emotional level help communicate deeper than words and leave an imprint
much stronger than anything you can achieve through a simple stating oI the Iacts.
Learning to be inspiring is not easyparticularly Ior individuals lacking in charisma. It can be
learned. Take note oI people who inspire you and analyze the way they communicate. Look Ior
ways to passionately express your vision. While there will always be room Ior improvement, a
small investment in eIIort and awareness will give you a signiIicant improvement in this
leadership trait.
ntelligence as a Leadership Trait
Intelligence is something that can be diIIicult to develop. The road toward becoming more
intelligent is diIIicult, long and can`t be completed without investing considerable time.
Developing intelligence is a liIestyle choice. Your college graduation was the beginning oI your
education, not the end. In Iact, much oI what is taught in college Iunctions merely as a
Ioundational language Ior liIelong educational experiences.
To develop intelligence you need to commit to continual learningboth Iormally and inIormally.
With modern advances in distance, education it is easy to take a class or two each year Irom well
respected proIessors in the evening at your computer.
InIormally, you can develop a great deal oI intelligence in any Iield simply by investing a
reasonable amount oI time to reading on a daily basis. The Iact is that most people won`t make a
regular investment in their education. Spending 30 minutes oI Iocused reading every day will
give you 182 hours oI study time each year.
For the most part, people will notice iI you are intelligent by observing your behavior and
attitude. Trying to display your intelligence is likely to be counterproductive. One oI the greatest
signs oI someone who is truly intelligent is humility. The greater your education, the greater your
understanding oI how little we really understand.
You can demonstrate your intelligence by gently leading people toward understandingeven
when you know the answer. Your Iocus needs to be on helping others learnnot demonstrating
how smart you are. Arrogance will put you in a position where people are secretly hopeIul that
you`ll make a mistake and appear Ioolish.
As unintuitive as it may seem, one oI the best ways to exhibit intelligence is by asking questions.
Learning Irom the people you lead by asking intelligent thoughtIul questions will do more to
enhance your intelligence credibility than just about anything. OI course this means you need to
be capable oI asking intelligent questions.
Everyone considers themselves intelligent. II you ask them to explain parts oI their area oI
expertise and spend the time to really understand (as demonstrated by asking questions), their
opinion oI your intelligence will go up. AIter all, you now know more about what makes them so
intelligent, so you must be smart as well. Your ability to demonstrate respect Ior the intellect oI
others will probably do more to inIluence the perception oI your intellect than your actual
$ummary of the ive Leadership Qualities
By consciously making an eIIort to exhibit these traits, people will be more likely to Iollow you.
These are the most important traits that people look Ior in their leaders. By exhibiting them on a
regular basis, you will be able to grow your inIluence to its potential as a leader.