Beyond You

Once a year I take a vacation day from work, spend a couple hundred dollars and trek across Atlanta in the early morning traffic for two hours.  It is so that I can attend Leadercast, a motivational event that focuses on leaders worth following.  We all need that.  The world needs it.  And I like seeing all of the good that can come from our human potential – the creative, the imaginative, the kind, the funny, the brave.  It’s worth a day of my time and a couple hundred bucks.  If you get a chance to attend the yearly event live or at one of the 800 simulcasts that are broadcast over 25 countries, I highly recommend it.  Take a day – fill your cup!

Every one of us are leaders.  It is not a position reserved for the rich and powerful.  The individual leader in each of us is a far more powerful influence on this planet.  We are parents, friends, mentors, teachers, students, givers, and encouragers.  And at the core, it is not about the leader, but about those we are leading.

Here are some of the highlights from this year’s theme Beyond You.  Do something that will last beyond yourself!

Andy Stanley, Communicator:
A good leader empowers those around them as well as those coming along behind.

Regardless of who gets the credit, we should leave the next generation stronger and more focused as a result of our leadership.

 The value of a life is always measured by how much was given away.  Funerals don’t celebrate accumulation.  They celebrate generosity and selflessness.

 If your leadership is not all about you, then it will live beyond you.

Dr. Henry Cloud, Psychologist:
The brain is always determining if someone is for or against them.  Trust comes when people feel you are connected to them and you understand them.  Influence is a result of that trust.

 Create spaces for people’s lives – birthday parties, time together, celebrations.  Don’t be too busy.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Laureate & Human Rights Activist:
You are you because of others.  We are made for each other and for human connectedness.  We are dependent on others.

 If we have loved well while we were alive, our love will go on for generations.

 Good leaders are servants.  They are not caught up in the trappings of power. 

Simon Sinek, Author:
The one characteristic needed to lead is courage. 

Leadership is a responsibility not a rank.  Take responsibility for your actions at the time you do them, not when you get caught.

You can also read some of my highlights from last year’s conference at Simply Do.

Be beyond you.  Be a leader worth following!

little feet



Simply Do

It was a meeting of the great minds of our times last week, as I had the opportunity to listen to the various speakers at Chick-fil-A’s Leadercast session in Atlanta.  It was inspiring.  Their bits of wisdom and optimism spoke of things each of us can do right now, today, wherever we are, to make a difference and do great things.  I would like to pass along some of their thoughts here, and also to keep for myself – to remind me when I need it most.

Andy Stanley author, speaker, pastor.  After working as an associate pastor and student minister at First Baptist Atlanta, he and five others founded North Point Community Church in 1995.  It has now grown to five campuses, over 24,000 attendees weekly, the second largest church in the U.S., and he was voted one of the most influential Christians and has the 3rd most influential church in America.

He starts the conference…  Ask yourself:  What is my critical role?  What is my unique contribution?  What is my core responsibility?  Do these things.

In case of an emergency, if you had to “break the glass”, what would be your role?  What would you do?  That should be your one sentence mission statement.  Anything that goes against that is not what you are supposed to do.

Condaleezza Rice first female African-American Secretary of State, college professor

Look for the enabling condition.  It all starts with one – one act, one person.  Look for that one thing that makes you act, makes you step out.

Be right with yourself.  Be grounded.  Have integrity.  People will see it.  You cannot truly lead without it.

Be an optimist.  Nobody wants to follow a pessimist.

Motivate toward a common goal.  Out of difficult circumstances in our past, good things have happened.

Be open to where life might take you.  Life is a series of events.

Mark Krzyzewski – Duke University Head Men’s Basketball Coach and Team USA

Focus on a culture of success, not on winning.

John C. Maxwell – author, sold over 20 million books

Add value intentionally everyday.  It will increase your influence.

Instead of trying to find a leader to solve our problems, Be the Leader.

Dr. Henry Cloud – psychologist and business coach, author

Create necessary endings.  If you are going down the wrong road, the worst thing you can do is hope it works out for the best.

Sanya Richards-Ross – 2012 Olympic gold medalist, track & field

Push through your fears.

David Allen – leading author on personal and organizational productivity

A kind of peace shows up during crisis.  You are no longer thinking about trivial things such as your email.

Einstein, Mother Theresa, and DaVinci all had the same amount of time as us.  It’s not about the time.  It is about having room to think.

Flexibility, not perfection.

And here are a few of my own that I like to say, both in my job and in my own personal life:

If we are making it too complicated, then we are doing it wrong. 

We are all good at something.  We each can do something uniquely that no one else can do exactly the same.

And from Seth Godin, marketing guru:  You are not your resume, you are not your workWhat you do matters more than what’s on a piece of paper.

little feet  So let’s go do it!