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The Leadership Imperative: Making Your Leadership Your Life

Layne McDonald. Ph.D.

"Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower." - Steve Jobs

Most leaders are underachievers. They are getting a fraction of the results of which they are capable. And in most cases, it is their fault. Their failures are the result of the choices they make. The opportunities to consistently get more outcomes are all around them; theirs are for the taking.

For instance, you must change your mindset to get more results than you are accustomed to. It would help if you aimed to make your leadership your life and your life your leadership. If you do not, you diminish both your leadership and your life. For instance, you must change your mindset to get more results than you are accustomed to. For example, you must change your mindset to get more results than you are used to. For instance, you must change your mindset to get more results than you are accustomed to. o have the change in attitude sink in. Hence, it changes you in a profound, fundamental way; you must cultivate two dynamics: a vision of the purpose of your leadership and the dedication to fulfill that purpose.

The word "vision" has been used and misused ad nauseam. The trouble is that most leaders misunderstand it. When they think "vision,” they look at themselves, at what they can do for themselves. An inward focus is the wrong place to look to do well for yourself.

Here is a vision that you can carry with you for the rest of your career and the rest of your life. I call it the Leadership Imperative.

I WILL LEAD PEOPLE IN SUCH A WAY THAT WE TOGETHER NOT ONLY ACHIEVE THE RESULTS WE NEED BUT ALSO BECOME BETTER AS PEOPLE AND AS LEADERS.

This vision has two parts: one is results-accomplishments, and the other is self-improvement.

You are never more powerful as a leader when, in getting results, you are helping others be better than they are -- even better than you thought they could be. Guided by the Leadership Imperative, you will find that the jobs you take on and the career(s) you have will, in terms of your doing well by them, take care of themselves.

However, vision alone is not enough. It would help if you were dedicated to realizing it. Realizing this vision means living not an easy life for ourselves but a hard life for others.

There are many ways to make such realization happen, and it should be our life's" journey to find them and put them into action. When you turn the focus of your ambitions away from yourself, and toward other people, when you become genuinely ambitious for their success, your success will take care of itself.

How do we let our leadership sink deeply into our life and change and shape it throughout our lives? By dedicating ourselves to passionately realizing the Leadership Imperative.


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