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  • feedwordpress 08:00:49 on 2019/09/12 Permalink
    Tags: , Courage, , , , , , ,   

    Things Every Courageous Leader Knows (That Most Ignore) 

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    Courage is a trait that seems to be in short supply these days, in leadership and elsewhere. People are looking for the kind of bold confident leaders we’ve seen throughout history—leaders who spoke up and stepped forward, who took the risks of true leadership when radical change was required.

    Whether you’re in politics, business, education, or any other field, at the top of the ladder or working your way up, you will encounter situations that demand your courage. It won’t be easy. Courageous leadership requires strong principles and tremendous tenacity.

    If you have what it takes to be a courageous leader, here are the things you need to do:

    Confront reality head on. Take off your rose-colored glasses and face what is actually going on. Get the facts, because only when you know what really happening can you lead the situation into a more successful, effective place.

    Allow for failure. Courageous leadership is open to bold new ideas—which means you have to allow for mistakes. The road to success is almost always paved with failures, so allow yourself to fail—and encourage your team to fail as well—so you can learn and grow from the experience.

    Say what needs to be said. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard someone say, “I wish I had the courage to say what I want to say.” I always respond by saying, “Give it a try.” Be bold and say what needs to be said.

    Encourage people to think for themselves. Many leaders have good ideas and enjoy sharing their wisdom with others, but it’s the courageous leader who encourages people to think for themselves and who listens to their thoughts.

    Hold yourself accountable. Let people know they can count on you. Accountability means you take on responsibility, deliver on commitments, and own up to your own mistakes and limits. When you hold yourself accountable, you model that behavior to those around you and help establish a culture where it’s the norm.

    Make decisions and move forward. Far too many environments foster a fearful approach to making decisions, but nothing great ever came out of fear. Express courageous leadership by encouraging decisive action that keeps things moving forward. Avoid the “paralysis of analysis.”

    Stay on course even when it gets tough. Especially if you’re taking bold actions and encouraging risks, you’ll eventually bump into the challenges of tough situations. When you fall, get back up. When you fail, try again. Tenacity is a huge component of courage.

    Give credit to those who deserve it. Be the courageous leader who isn’t fearful to take less of the credit and give the lion’s share to those who deserve it.

    If it’s your wish to be a leader who wants to change the world, leave a mark, make a difference, you need to start now to mold yourself into a courageous leader. Find and nurture the qualities that make you brave and bold. Courage isn’t inborn; it’s learned.

    Lead from within: The natural response when people say we need a courageous leader is to run from the notion, but life’s greatest leaps occur when we resist the impulse to run.

    #1  N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R

    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: iStockPhotos

    The post Things Every Courageous Leader Knows (That Most Ignore) appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 11:05:22 on 2017/06/20 Permalink
    Tags: , Courage, Heroic Leadership, , , , ,   

    Why Heroic Leadership Is Needed Now More Than Ever 

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    Recently I was at an event at the Princeton Club talking about my new book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness. Someone there asked me an intriguing question: “With all the work you do with leaders around the world, who are the leaders you most admire?”

    I thought about it for a split second before answering to the room, “If you are living bravely and leading courageously, you are my hero. Those are the leaders I admire the most.”

    That kind of courage has become sadly endangered. More than ever before, we have a real gap in our leadership.

    The climate of leadership these days is laced with distrust and skepticism. We hold our leaders in doubt and their actions in mistrust. And the worst of it is knowing that what’s happening in leadership today is going to end up costing all of us in the years to come.

    In the past, the leaders we looked up to had character we could value, traits we could admire, values we wanted to emulate.

    But when so many examples of contemporary leadership are laced with ego and distrust, you have to wonder where we’re heading. The only way to salvage today’s leadership is to find the heroic leaders who are courageous enough to lead us in the right direction.

    Heroic leaders are always in high demand—and that’s more true than ever now, when they’re in such short supply. We all have what it takes if we’re willing to do the work.

    Here are some simple but profound things you can do to advance your own brand of heroic leadership:

    End passivity. To get anything done, a heroic leader must move the status quo, end mediocrity and be brave enough to do things that matter even when they’re difficult or may cause conflict. It means not only talking but backing your words up with action.

    Don’t allow the new to become the norm. Heroic leaders are brave enough to remind us not to accept what we don’t value or respect. Faced with declining standards, too many of us are willing to tolerate a “new normal.” But heroic leaders habitually step back to think about how they can work for positive change—in themselves, in their organization and in the world. They have the courage not to normalize or accept bad behavior or bad leadership.

    Break down the silos. Leadership is at its worst when it’s carried out from silos—isolated towers that make collaboration and communication impossible.  Great leadership is a “we” message, not a “me” message. A heroic leader understands that true power of leadership is unity—knowing we’re all in this together. When one person tells others what to do and how to do it and everyone else has to keep quiet and listen, you have a dictatorship, not a democracy. The way to take back leadership is not with ego or power but with humility and collaboration.

    Lead with EQ instead of IQ. Many of us put a lot of emphasis on IQ—that is, skills and thought. And those are important, but they’re not enough on their own. Heroic leaders know that it’s important to connect with others emotionally and to make sure they know you have their back. They have a high degree of emotional intelligence.

    Set the standard. Heroic leaders set high standards for themselves and others. It’s about giving people something compelling to grasp on to and work for while making sure they feel heard and seen and understood.

    Use straight talk. Heroic leaders have nothing to hide. They are brave enough and smart enough to keep the lines of communication open, even when they don’t know all the answers. They know how to use straight talk and are not afraid to say, “I don’t know.” They’re strong enough to share information instead of hoarding it.

    Encourage pushback. Many leaders feel pressure to have all the answers. But heroic leaders encourage constructive dissent and healthy debate. They reinforce the strength of others and demonstrate that in the tension of diverse opinions lies a better answer. It’s not about who is right or wrong but about what can we learn from each other.

    Don’t confuse authority and power. The key to heroic leadership is influence, not authority—because authority isn’t power. If you are a heroic leader who has the ability to change someone’s perspective, never waste that gift. It’s one of the most powerful abilities you can have—especially when you use it on behalf of those who have no influence.

    Start accountability with yourself. The role of heroic leadership is to set the expectations that everyone can commit to and be responsible for. Accountability starts with you—you must hold yourself responsible for modeling the behaviors and actions you want others to follow. People naturally emulate those who lead them, so stay aware that others are looking to you.

    Lead from within: You are here to make a difference—to either improve the world or worsen it. And, whether or not you consciously choose to, you will accomplish one or the other. Choose courage, choose bravery, choose to be a hero. We need you now more than ever.


    Learn more about The Heroic Leader in my Wall Street Journal Bestseller book:
    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now

    Additional Reading you might enjoy:

    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post Why Heroic Leadership Is Needed Now More Than Ever appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 12:00:37 on 2017/01/03 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Courage, , , ,   

    The Best Leaders Are Great Coaches 

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    screen-shot-2017-01-03-at-6-54-24-amGreat leadership is made up of numerous different elements and roles, which come together differently in different leadership styles. One role that’s often overlooked is that of serving as a coach.

    If you’ve ever played or trained under a great coach, you already understand how vast their influence can be.

    The best leaders, like the best coaches, give those around them permission to succeed and know how to help them reach their potential.

    Here are some of the most important coaching ideas shared by great leaders—ideas that can benefit anyone’s leadership in any field:

    Communicate with wisdom. As a coach and leader, you need exceptional communication skills. Your words should make people sit up, listen and feel inspired to act.

    Challenge the unchallenged. It’s important to know how to challenge others without making them feel criticized or scorned.

    Raise the bar. Set and maintain high personal standards. Keep raising the bar so others can follow suit.

    Invest in teamwork. Teach those around you to value great collaboration even more than individual achievement. Demonstrate the truth of TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More

    Encourage boldness. Encourage others to make mistakes and take bold moves. Nothing great was ever achieved by not being courageous.

    Embrace diversity. Understand and take to heart the value of diversity and take advantage of every opportunity to demonstrate and attest to its importance.

    View people in terms of their potential. Recognize the unrealized potential in those around you. Even more important, help them see it for themselves.

    Be available. Whatever your position, build a reputation as someone who’s approachable and quick to help.

    Accumulate resources. Develop an extensive network both within and outside your organization. Make it available as a resource for others, not just yourself.

    Provide solutions. Learn to seek out and develop win-win solutions and teach those skills to others.

    Be an optimist. Cultivate an optimistic outlook that guides you to focus on the possibilities and connections that others might miss.

    Create a compelling vision. Have a well-developed personal vision that you can communicate clearly and with inspiration. Present your vision in a way that encourages others to do the same.

    Coaches are great leaders because they know how to unlock potential and motivate people to maximize their performance. In short, they help others learn to be their best. And that’s what leadership is all about.

    Lead from within: Great leadership isn’t about what you accomplish yourself; it’s about what you inspire others to do.

    For coaching, consulting, workshops, and speaking. Please feel free to contact us.
    Photo Credit: Getty Images



    The post The Best Leaders Are Great Coaches appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 11:51:01 on 2016/11/15 Permalink
    Tags: , , Courage, Determination, Having Guts, , , ,   

    Your Leadership Requires You to Have Guts 

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    Leadership is hard. It means making difficult decisions, stepping out of your comfort zone, and standing on the edge of your greatness.

    Leadership requires that you have guts.

    There are many who have the title of leader. But the only ones who truly deserve the title are those who can weather the storms and stand in their struggles.

    Because true leadership requires great men and women to bring all the courage, boldness, toughness, determination and audacity they can summon.
    Here are some of the qualities of a gutsy leader. Cultivate them now to become everything you can be:

    The COURAGE to change direction when things are on the wrong track. When something isn’t working, you need a leader who has the courage to see the need for change and bring up the benefits of going in another direction. It’s the kind of courage that shows up when you most need to shake things up and get back on the path toward something great. You’ll never do anything worthwhile in this world without courage.

    The BOLDNESS to face reality when resources are strained. When money or another vital resource is dwindling, you need to be bold enough not to hide in the spreadsheets but to come out and share the hard truth. You can admit that things are not as they should be, but in a way that is unafraid and focused on solutions, with faith in your team’s ability to rally even at the last minute to turn things around. To be bold is to always be facing forward.

    The TOUGHNESS to be more stubborn than your difficulties. When you’re facing obstruction and obstacles, handicaps and complications, you need to be the leader who says “Times are tough but we are tougher.”

    The DETERMINATION to pursue new opportunities in the face of opposition. People don’t generally like change, so it’s up to the leader to push past the status quo and make things happen. It’s a job that takes tenacity and spirit. Some leaders succeed because they are destined, but most because they are determined.

     The AUDACITY to say no unapologetically. Some leaders want to say yes to everything—but when they do, they take away their ability to set priorities. Every great advance in leadership came from someone who found the nerve to simply say “no”—as a complete sentence, without any justification or explanation or apology. When you make judicious use of “no,” you set the priorities that allow you to say a bigger “yes” to the most compelling ideas and vision.

     If you’re serious about leadership, always remember that it has to come from deep inside. It takes courage, boldness, toughness, determination and audacity, as the saying goes: no guts, no glory.

    Lead From Within: Great leaders aren’t always the ones who win, but those with the most guts.

    Additional Reading:

    Photo Credit: Getty Images



    The post Your Leadership Requires You to Have Guts appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

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