Leadership

Great Leaders Who Overcame Huge Obstacles

overcomingYou may have heard the saying, “If you get knocked down; get back up and try again.” Not everyone on top today got there by having success after success. Many people face obstacles that forced them to work harder and show more determination than others. In fact, the greatest triumphs often come from situations that seem overwhelmingly awful. The way in which you respond to those adversities can be seen as victories themselves. People who have encountered challenges may agree that the factors in overcoming obstacles are determination, focus, and self-discipline.

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The Results Are In: How Do You Prepare for a Future Leadership Role?

Leadership MsgA company is ultimately shaped by those in leadership positions, for better or worse. Because of this—and because having the right leadership is vital to company success—we wanted to know how Movin’ On Up readers might prepare for future leadership roles.

The Results
According to our poll, the majority of respondents (49%) said they prepare for a future leadership role using a combination of the following: pursuing higher education, finding a mentor, and learning new skills, among others.

Approximately 15% of respondents selected “learn new skills through work or volunteering” as the sole way they prepare for a leadership role, while “study leadership” and “pursue higher education” tied with 10% of the votes.

In addition, each of the following choices received less than 10% of the votes:

  • Find a mentor
  • Become involved with networking or industry organizations
  • Change careers

Readers were also able to select the “Other” option and provide their own answers. Of the 3% who chose this option, responses included utilizing personal connections, going beyond the average duty of their jobs, and taking responsibility for special initiatives—just to name a few.

To learn more about how you can prepare for a future leadership role with every day habits, check out this article.

Do you aspire to be in a leadership position someday? Are there other ways you’re preparing for a future leadership role? Let us know in the comments section below!

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

Celebrate Women’s History Month With These Stats

March is Women’s History Month in the United States and is a great time to reflect on the many accomplishments of the nation’s leaders. In 1981, Congress requested President Ronald Reagan to proclaim the week beginning March 7 as “Women’s History Week.” Since 1995, a series of annual proclamations have designated the entire month of March “Women’s History Month.”

To help you celebrate the annual observance, take a look at this infographic from ATG Stores.

ifg_main_womenshistory
Click for full-size image.

Everyday Habits That Make You a Better Leader

habits_better_leader_webBecoming a great leader doesn’t take a lifetime of work. Rather, there are everyday habits you can start right now that will help you learn to successfully lead others. From communicating effectively to being courageous in the face of adversity, these tips can help you mold yourself into the leader you want to be today.

Learn to set clear expectations.
It’s fair to say that no one can read minds. So, it’s especially important to make sure you are setting clear expectations before starting a project or delegating an assignment. If you’re leading people on a project, ensure you’re being precise, both verbally and in writing, about what is expected and when you expect the work to be completed. If you’re being assigned a task, make sure you ask questions that clearly establish the expectations of your job before you start. By clarifying expectations, you decrease the opportunity for problems to arise and make it easier to deal with them when they do.

Focus on people.
If you’re a supervisor or a leader of others, it’s important to visit with your teammates on a frequent basis. Investing time in your co-workers helps grow your team and build trust, accountability, and understanding. And strengthening your relationships with those you lead helps you give important feedback during annual reviews. If you aren’t in a leadership position yet, the same rules apply. Getting to know your co-workers and being someone people trust is a great way to help you move up the ladder and get noticed.

Get involved.
One of the easiest ways to gain experience, network, and build your resume is through volunteering. When you give your time to help with community service or an organization that’s important to you, you’ll gain valuable relationships, enjoy the feeling of giving back, and gain skills you may not have otherwise. You may also learn how to lead others, which can be a valuable tool back at the office.

Be brave.
When faced with difficult decisions, leaders have to be brave. In fact, employees will often look to how a leader behaves during turbulent times before deciding how to react themselves. When you’re faced with adversity in the workplace or at home, take a deep breath and consider your options before moving forward. Remember to assess the outcomes of your decisions to learn from your mistakes and celebrate your accomplishments.

Know yourself.
According to Forbes, 90% of top performing leaders possess an abundance of self-awareness. Having a strong sense of self-awareness means you have a clear image of yourself, which includes your leadership style, strengths, weaknesses, and skills. You know where you can improve, and you know where you shine. Once you develop stronger self-awareness, you can craft a plan for improving areas that need work.

Hold yourself accountable.
When things go wrong, it’s easy to blame someone else. But, great leaders know when they’re at fault. Instead of shifting the blame to someone else, own up to your mistakes and any role you had in the problem. Don’t be afraid of what may happen when you’re honest, and never point the finger at those who are not at fault. Furthermore, be there to back up those who need you when things go wrong.

Love what you do.
When you’re passionate about something, it shows. And often, it’s contagious. Take time to be thankful for your job and gain enthusiasm for what you do so others can pick up on your energy. Strive to share the passion you have for your work with others before boredom and apathy take over your team.

How do you prepare yourself to be a successful leader? Share your tips in the comments section below.

Movin’ On Up is brought to by Express Employment Professionals.

Peak Performer’s Life: FOCUS … Your Personal Guide to Success

walterbond_webIf you’ve ever been on an airplane, you know how quickly big things appear small. Cars look like ants, acres of land become colorful squares, and skyscrapers become miniscule. It’s amazing what a little perspective can do. Being able to see from a different perspective can make a significant difference in life, and can help you focus on the things that matter. This week on Peak Performer’s Life, Walter Bond continues his series on the importance of focus.

According to Walter:
“I believe this topic is a game changer for you. I believe this topic might be the one thing you’ve been missing all these years that can position you to be successful. ”

Check out Walter’s inspirational message below:

 

 

What are some ways you can change your perspective in your work life? In your personal life? Let us know in the comments section below.

New messages each week!
Walter Bond and Peak Performer’s Life is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals. Don’t forget to check back each Wednesday for a new message from Walter Bond! If you missed an episode of Peak Performer’s Life, visit the archive to catch up.

About Walter Bond
A former American professional basketball player, Walter Bond’s NBA career included 153 games with the Dallas Mavericks, Utah Jazz, and Detroit Pistons. Now, Walter takes what he learned from his life on the court and translates it into motivational and educational messages for thriving businesses and careers. For more information, visit WalterBond.com.

Movin’ On Up and Peak Performers Life is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

5 Laws Successful Leaders Live By

5_leadership_laws_webWhether you consider yourself a leader or not, there are always leadership opportunities to be found in the day-to-day responsibilities of your career. From taking a lead role in a team project to simply taking it on yourself to ensure a task is done right, you are most likely leading more than you realize. An article from Forbes explains it like this: “Leadership is not indicative of position or title but rather personal choice ….Anybody and everybody is a leader…”

There’s no exact formula on how to be a great leader. However, for the sake of personal and professional growth, you must begin taking steps now to ensure you’re becoming the best leader you can be. And one way is to adopt these five laws successful leaders live by.

Live and Let Live
Sometimes you have to make decisions that other people won’t like. At the same time, there will also be people above, beside, and below you who make decisions you don’t agree with. A wise leader knows this and is able to distinguish between the times that disagreement is okay and the times that agreement is necessary.

Actions Speak Louder Than Words
What you say is important, but what you do is even more important. How you act and the things you do are the true measure of what you value. And if co-workers, employees, managers, or customers hear you say one thing but then see you do another, you’ll quickly lose their trust and credibility as a leader.

A House Divided Cannot Stand
Nothing hurts a project, relationship, or business worse than strife between the people involved. There will always be disagreements, but everything will fall apart if there isn’t a unifying goal and a willingness to work together. A leader is always aware of this and constantly works to ensure there is cooperation and harmony.

A Job Worth Doing Is Worth Doing Right
There may be times when you’re faced with the choice of quality or speed. Ninety-nine times out of 100 you should opt for quality. The quality of your work, or your company’s, is what sets you apart, and nothing hurts a reputation more than a low-caliber final product.

Don’t Judge a Book By Its Cover
Appearance and first impressions are important, but a good leader also knows that looks can be deceiving. The most eye-catching candidate may not be the most qualified, and the less exciting option may be the most logical choice. So decisions must be based on more than just a hasty judgment.

Whether it’s by adopting these five laws, learning from the example of some of the greats, or implementing some of the most common habits of successful leaders, you have to learn to lead. Not only is it important for future career growth, it’s also important for your own personal fulfillment.

Are there other leadership laws or principles you follow? Share your own leadership tips in the comment section below.

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.

Leadership Lessons from Popular Songs

leadership_lessons_from_popular_songs_webEvery day, the radio plays the hottest songs of the season, and while these songs entertain, they can also teach us a thing or two about leadership.

Leadership lessons from popular songs? Why not? When it comes down to it, everything can be a way to improve leadership skills. Some of these tunes have a deeper underlying theme that can help you find your steps and improve your life.

So, without further adieu, let’s find our leadership lessons in these popular songs.

1. “Shake it Off” by Taylor Swift
Taylor Swift manages to shake off the naysayers and bounce back bigger and better every time. You too can follow this example. You’ll have people trying to cut you down, hold you back, and make you feel less than perfect, but it’s your choice how to react. Everyone makes mistakes. Success comes from how you handle that mistake, and great leaders don’t let others bring them down. Concentrate on doing the best you can, learn from your mistakes, and strive to move on.

2. “I’m Not the Only One” by Sam Smith
This song is about listening to your instincts when something doesn’t feel right. In today’s world, the art of listening to your inner voice is sometimes nonexistent. However, knowing what’s in your heart can lead you on the right path. If something doesn’t feel legitimate or if you can’t trust who you are dealing with, you might want to keep your guard up. If you come across an opportunity, like a job posting, that feels good, explore it further. Research the company and learn about its culture, goals, and history. But, remember the age-old wisdom – if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

3. “Ghost” by Ella Henderson
Sometimes we make mistakes or go through a bad time, and we can’t seem to let that mistake go. We keep “going to the river to pray” because we need something to wash the pain away, but it keeps haunting us. Ella makes a good point. She’s losing sleep, she’s dealing with the devil, and she’s still hurting. Maybe it’s time for you to give up the ghost. What has happened in the past cannot be changed, but dwelling on those destructive feelings can only cause more harm. Maybe you’ve had a bad job experience, or your interviews aren’t always going perfectly. Find a way to make peace with your past and enter the future with a bright, positive outlook.

4. “Moves Like Jagger” by Maroon 5
The first line of this popular song is “just shoot for the stars, if it feels right.” The boys from Maroon 5 have the right idea. If you have a dream and it feels right to you, then go for it. Consider what you want to accomplish and start making progress to reach your goals. If you want to start a side gig, switch careers, or go for a big promotion, you have to be the one to make it happen. Having dreams and goals are important, but so is believing in them. Every day, do something that helps you reach your goals.

5. “Superheroes” by the Script
As the lyrics say, “When you’ve been fighting for it all your life, you’ve been struggling to make things right, that’s how a superhero learns to fly, Every day, every hour, turn the pain into power.” This song teaches us to never give up and to always keep fighting for what is important. Challenges, victories, defeats, and experiences give us the tools to become superheroes, especially if you learn to turn pain into power. No matter what happens, you can overcome the difficulties and become a super leader to others. Take all your experiences and become stronger because of it.

Next time your favorite song comes on the radio, listen hard. You may learn a life lesson from simple lyrics.

Do you have a favorite song that inspires you as a leader? Share with us in the comments section below.

Movin’ On Up is brought to you by Express Employment Professionals.