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Lead By Example

Layne McDonald. Ph.D.

One of the tests of leadership is the ability to recognize a problem before it becomes an emergency. - Arnold Glasow


Have you ever read any good books on leadership? Something by John Maxwell? What stands out in my mind about the information contained in these books is the technique for effective leadership. One of the biggest is leading by example.

Throughout history, the most outstanding leaders were people who envisioned things others could not see and shared their vision with the masses to improve the quality of life. 

Never once did a leader become a great leader by being pessimistic and negative. Never has anything been conducted of value by looking at a problem and complaining without offering a solution to the problem. A leader who only supplies a negative picture stays a leader for a brief time, a time when they are noticed but become irrelevant. 

I have spoken of the negative influence of the media in our lives and how we must strive to overcome it. I believe that by immersing ourselves in the positive, we can conduct that. A leader of people must understand that to be effective. He must give the people who follow him hope for better things. In doing so, he rises to higher levels and conducts excellent things. When he loses sight of the lofty challenge of being an optimistic visionary in any organization, a leader is destined to fail, for no one will follow a leader going over a cliff.

As you strive to develop your business or career, you should remember that you can be whomever you wish to be. You can look at challenges and problems and offer real solutions and visions for the future that people can grasp, or you can see the problem and rub everyone’s nose in it as you complain until no one is listening anymore.

With customer complaints, you perk up and listen to them. If you work for a company that you complain about all the time, no one listens when you complain. Complainers develop a cloak of invisibility that is only penetrated when they are seen long enough to be removed from the company. At that point, the complainer has become nothing more than an eyesore.

As we look at the so-called leaders of the day, we should remember that we are not the only ones who see them. The world is watching our country and our business. As our leaders complain without offering solutions, the world sees an ugly picture of discontent and failure with no keys at hand. Only when people realize that the role of the leader is to be the visionary, the one with the answer, will things in our world change for the better. 

Expect beautiful things, offer excellent solutions, throw your hat in the ring when ready for the challenge, and step up to lead.

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