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The Essence of a Leader

leader

Everyone wants to be a leader…until that moment where they have to truly step up and lead. 

Because we often associate leadership with impressive titles, more pay, and additional job perks. 

Yet leadership isn’t made in corner offices or fancy boardrooms. Real leadership happens on the front lines. 

And what most leaders don’t understand about leading is that it isn’t telling people what to do; it’s showing them what to do. 

Which means that essentially a big part of leadership is simply this: “I’ll go first.”

Whatever I’m asking you to do I will do. 

Whatever needs to be done won’t be done by you; it will be done by us. 

And whatever sacrifices need to be made will be made by me first. 

I’ll be the first to risk. 

I’ll be the first to invest. 

I’ll be the first to do the work. 

I’ll be the first to create the model. 

I’ll be the first to invent the path where there is none. 

I’ll be the first to take the heat. 

I’ll be the first to make the difficult decisions. 

I’ll be the first to take the blame. 

I’ll be the first to learn. 

I’ll be the first to change. 

I’ll be the first to cut. 

I’ll be the first to meet that standard. 

I’ll be the first to break that belief barrier. 

“I’ll go first.”

That kind of leadership isn’t assigned; it’s assumed. 

That kind of leadership isn’t demanding; it’s inspiring. 

That kind of leadership isn’t bestowed; it’s activated. 

That is the part of leadership that can’t be taught in classrooms; it can only be revealed in battle. 

But if you’re willing to be that kind of person…

If you’re willing to step up…

If you’re willing to go where no one has gone before…

Then you don’t need a title. 

You don’t need an office. 

And you don’t need perks. 

You are already on your way to developing the essence of a great leader. 

Why People Leave and Employee Loyalty with Scott Love – Episode 164 of The Action Catalyst Podcast

employee loyalty

Scott Love is a credentialed expert on the topic of employee loyalty with over two decades of high-level headhunting experience. With empirical research based on tens of thousands of conversations with professionals, he gives managers the secrets to keeping high performers, and keeping them happy.  As a former Navy leadership trainer and Annapolis graduate, he gives managers ideas on how to increase employee retention, boost morale and performance, and attract high achievers. 

Scott is a published author with his newest book, Why They Follow: How to Lead with Positive Influence, a business writer, a professional keynote speaker, and has been quoted in the Wall Street Journal, Selling Power Magazine, and dozens of business trade journals and newspapers around the globe. 

As a leadership trainer when serving as a naval officer, he trained thousands of officers, senior enlisted and civil service workers on progressive leadership concepts.  Scott currently recruits partner-level attorneys for international law firms.  He is a graduate of the United States Naval Academy and lives in Washington, DC. He is a watercolor artist, an amateur stand-up comedian, and is married with two children, one hamster, and one invisible dog.

Show Highlights

  • When people leave it is always for emotional reasons. @scottlove
  • Employees need recognition for what they do. @scottlove
  • The key is for managers to lead in a way that their employee connects meaning to work. @scottlove
  • The way to keep your employees is by connecting global corporate vision to each individual on the team. @scottlove
  • As a manager, my job is to help you do as well as you can here and give you tools so that if and when you leave it is going to improve your career. @scottlove
  • Sometimes the best thing you can do is give people space. @scottlove
  • As long as you have the right people in place they will accomplish the mission. @scottlove
  • People don’t leave companies, people leave people. @rory_vaden
  • There is not a shortage of good candidates, they’re just busy working. @scottlove
  • A lot of times we put too much emphasis on just pay. @rory_vaden
  • Meaning comes from the service we provide to people around us. @rory_vaden
  • Vision is not academic that checks boxes it is emotional statement that creates pictures in the minds of people. @rory_vaden
  • What is a company other than a collection of people? @rory_vaden
  •  If you have the ability to move people emotionally you have the ability to be a great leader. @rory_vaden
  • Great leadership is about moving people emotionally. @rory_vaden

To connect with Scott, get your copy of Why They Follow: How to Lead with Positive Influence and more on employee loyalty visit: scottlove.com

The Action Catalyst is a weekly podcast hosted by Rory Vaden of Southwestern Consulting every Wednesday. The show is regularly in the Top 25 of Business News Podcasts, has listeners from all around the world and shares “insights and inspiration to help you take action.” Each week Rory shares ideas on how to increase your self-discipline and make better use of your time to help you achieve your goals in life. He also interviews special expert guests and thought leaders. Subscribe on iTunes and please leave a rating and review!

All You Need to Know About Leadership

leadership

The idea of leadership can be intimidating.

But leadership is simple.

To lead is to care.

Leadership is learning to elevate the needs of others to be equal to or above your own.

Leadership then is not a title.

Leadership is not a position.

Leadership is not a crown.

Leadership instead, is a condition of your heart.

It’s a heart that wants to look after others.

It’s a heart that seeks to protect others.

It’s a heart that desires to provide for others.

Leadership is difficult.

But it’s not the act of leading that is that difficult.

It’s the change of focus that’s difficult.

It’s the increase in selflessness that’s challenging.

It’s the worrying less about yourself and more about others that takes intention.

But like many things that are difficult, it comes with a great reward.

It ends up being the person who makes the sacrifice that gets the gift.

The gift of seeing someone else succeed.

The gift of watching someone else grow.

The gift of experiencing something that is bigger than yourself.

That is leadership.

That is human.

That is wonderful.

And that kind of leadership is always worth it.

Are you going to get passed by?

Technology

It’s hard to notice because we’re living right through it, but a monumental shift has occurred that has changed business forever.

Technology.

Before you say “Well duh Rory,” stick with me for a minute.

Yes it’s obvious that we all realize that technology has become a big part of how we live and work, but I think our thinking about technology is still lagging behind technology itself.

You see, most of us think of technology as “a part” of our lives.

In other words we think of it as something we do.

But more and more technology is not something we do; it’s everything we do.

It’s not a part of our lives; it’s every part of our lives.

In thinking about it like the human body, technology isn’t just a hand, a foot or even a limb; it’s the central nervous system.

It’s connected to every single part of our lives.

It’s important to realize this because having this heightened understanding of the role that tech plays in our lives better enables us to operate and perform inside of the new paradigm.

For example if you’re managing millennials you have to realize that, as Cofounder of the Center for Generational Kinetics Jason Dorsey says, they’re not just tech savvy; they are “tech dependent.”

When we think of them as tech savvy, we think about it, treat it, and react to it as if it were a peccadillo, a peculiar trait, or maybe even a slight annoyance that we have with them.

But when we realize they’re actually tech dependent, we have to radically change our entire business. We have to update all of our systems, our processes, and all of our tools or else we will lose them-both as employees and as customers.

When a company thinks of itself as having an “IT department”, it manages it, funds it, and staffs it as its own operating unit – which is a terrible mistake.

Because IT is no longer a department; its your entire strategy. It is that which connects all of your departments together.

When you think of IT in that way it forces you to look at it completely differently. It serves as the cornerstone of all of your business’s processes and the essential platform of the company’s future performance.

Similarly when a person thinks of technology as just a tool that they may or may not use, they risk getting passed up by someone who is faster, sharper, and more responsive because they’re empowered by technology.

Because to an individual technology is no longer an optional tool; its now a critical competency.

Technology isn’t just a thing we use to get a job done; its becoming the very language we communicate in both business and in life.

There are probably not many days left where we can think of technology as “a piece” “a part” or “an option.”

It’s become much more pervasive than that.

It’s more ubiquitous than that.

It’s an all encompassing thread through each area of our lives and our businesses.

I’m not saying I like it, or I want it to be that way anymore than you do.

I’m just saying that if we want to have a chance to compete in the future, we probably need to start thinking about it all differently.

Lest we get passed on by.