This past week I moved one step closer to achieving one of my life goals; I completed my Prospectus hearing for my doctorate in leadership. This milestone includes the written front end of your dissertation and a briefing on your research problem and the methodology whereby you intend to go forth and gather data. My hearing was this past Wednesday and my readers and several faculty members who were with me since the beginning were in attendance.
Empowering is drawn out; enabling is dumped in. People who are willing to be developed need a hand up, not a handout. I'll do anything for anyone, but if you will not begin to pick up your own slack, I'm off to spend my resources on someone who'll use it to put their lives on a whole new trajectory. That’s genuine compassion and tremendous empowerment. Until the recipient owns their part of fixing life, the only thing they’ll want from you is more enabling. Give people the tools, and not just the solutions, and let them get to work. Invest in people wisely so you can help them and not hurt them.
I hear a great deal about culture, and it seems to be this elusive wild animal that may be kind or may tear up your organization. I think it gets blamed or praised for a whole lot of the success and failures business owners and entrepreneurs experience. Individuals are what constitutes a culture. Each is responsible for the energy and behaviors he or she brings into the workplace. Each employee must continually ask themselves, "Am I here to make a difference for the organization or am I here to make a difference for myself?"
Becoming the next version of tremendousness is simple: Spark your willpower; fuel your staying power; and watch your tremendous power become a reality. Write down what you want to do with your week, your month, your year, your life, then ask yourself the two follow-on questions. Once you can answer yes to both, add healthy doses of people, books, prayer, self-discipline, and self-belief, and you’ll be on the path to a tremendous transformation.
As leaders, we wear many hats. We are optimists, encouragers, ethicists, decision-makers, saviors, and sense-makers. So just like the mighty forests, we must do the same for ourselves and our organization. We need to be intentional about who we allow in our forest. After all, you cannot get it right without the right people. We need to stay nourished as well because leading others, although incredibly uplifting, can also be unbelievably draining. We must deal with bureaucracies, laws, budgets, attitudes, and global issues. To stay above the fray, we need to make sure our roots go deep; so deep that when the winds of change or fires of crisis come into our forest, we can not only survive, but thrive.