Darren: We are almost through the eight values. Number six is leadership. Talk about that for a minute with us.
Paul: Leadership is about working toward excellence with others. Rarely is excellence something you accomplish by yourself. Most of the time, we are part of a group – a team – working together to accomplish a common goal. Even when we are on our own, we have a support network – parents, teachers, coaches, co-workers, mentors, and friends – to help us.
As a leader, if you are going to work toward excellence, I think you have to be humble. All leaders have a spotlight that they shine. Leaders who are all about position and title tend to shine it on themselves. Leaders who are about working toward excellence shine it on their people. In which direction does your leadership spotlight shine?
I have two pieces of advice for leaders:
1. Build relationships with people – put others first. Listen to them. Treat them with respect. Call them by name. Take a genuine interest in them. Call them, email them, reach out to them. Show that you care. Be kind. And don’t expect anything in return.
2. Become a lifelong learner of leadership – study great leaders, read books on leadership, and attend conferences. Former Tennessee women’s basketball coach Pat Summit simply said, “Never arrive.”