One of the joys of my professional life is gathering leaders to share collective wisdom from lessons learned, whether it’s at a community symposium or in one of my Arizona State University courses focused on leadership for change, public administration, and community development.
I recently gathered a group of high-level public administrators to share lessons learned from many years of leadership service. The panel included city managers, police chiefs, public healthcare administrators, U.S. Congressional staff, arts/culture and economic development leaders, city planners, and more.
My final question was this: What ONE bit of advice would you share for growing your leadership skills in times of constant change? Without a lot of editorial comment, I wanted to share their answers, plain and simple.
Which of these could inspire your leadership path forward while providing encouragement to your staff, your colleagues/co-workers, and those in your life?
- Build a circle of supporters.
- Believe in yourself.
- Learn to say “no.”
- Celebrate small successes.
- Unplug. Incorporate personal fitness as you unplug!
- Ask – what went WELL? Negativity breeds negativity – so focus on what’s positive and do No. 4 – celebrate successes!
- Step back… be creative by seeing the world through a new lens.
- Manage fears by explaining the focus of your job now… don’t get too far ahead (of your work group) … (of others who need to be convinced) … (of yourself!). Explain the focus of your tasks in the “now” and why that work is critical right now.
- Don’t be afraid! Fear paralyzes.
- Know the value that you bring to the table.