How would you describe some of the greatest leaders you have met or worked with? What were the traits you admired the most? If your aspirations include honing your leadership capabilities, it is likely that leaders from your immediate or distant past have left an indelible impression. I can still vividly recall my first encounter with an outstanding leader. He was able to inspire every individual and could easily recall the names of every staff member in the company. Although the business went through many ups and downs, this individual was always upbeat, genuine and available. As I reflect on my own leadership journey, I will always remember his energy and sincerity, hoping to emulate many of his strengths while building key team relationships.
Leaders have tremendous influence on an individual’s career path. Ideally, we expect every career experience to be positive. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Numerous books and articles have been written about the fact that people often leave organizations because of their immediate supervisor or manager. I have encountered many leaders throughout the course of my various vocations, many of whom were memorable for the wrong reasons. Nonetheless, I choose to view the collection of experiences as invaluable because every leader taught me a great deal about how to lead and what it meant to be ultimately responsible for the success of others.
Leaders who are exemplary in character leave a lasting impression. Those who are not are accountable for creating high levels of toxicity, often falling from grace in the eyes of their own employees and management alike. Of course, I aspired to become the type of leader that resembled those I admired the most. Their attributes included integrity, honesty, humility, optimism and a capacity to ask the right questions. Such highly admirable qualities are evergreen. When leaders become more conscious of their sphere of influence, they in turn become even more effective in building more leaders rather than followers. People crave authentic, positive experiences from their leaders. They are keen to learn, contribute and collaborate, relishing the opportunity to be challenged while forging their own path. It is important for leaders to never lose sight of their fundamental role as influencers and mentors in the eyes of their workforce.
Michelle Ray (Twitter) is one of the best international leadership keynote speakers in Vancouver. She helps you discover your potential through presentations, coaching and consulting. With over 20 years of experience Michelle has worked with hundreds of companies around the world. She is taking bookings for speaking engagements and can be contacted at MichelleRay.com