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Leadership is for Everyone, Acclaimed Author and Artist Says
Tuesday, June 17, 2014 6:40 AM

Leadership is not bigger than us. According to Ben Glenn, an acclaimed author and artist, it is a mindset that helps us recognize and pursue opportunities to make a difference in the lives of others.

“If you’re really preparing yourself to be a leader, to live a life of influence, to become the person that others respect and listen to, you’ll need to learn how to do one thing really well: Learn how to serve others,” he says.

Glenn, who is headlining the Cornerstone Credit Union League’s Marketing & Business Development Conference Oct. 1-3 in Oklahoma City, Okla., says helping others should be a natural extension of every leader’s responsibilities.

He shares the following 10 thoughts with Leaguer readers:

  1. Sharing knowledge - One of the easiest ways to help others is to simply share your knowledge. Every day there is an opportunity to educate someone about your area of expertise. The key is to keep educating yourself so you can stay ahead of the curve.
  2. Finding out what’s valuable to them - The number one rule of helping people should be to find out what’s actually valuable to someone. Make an effort to ask them where they need help, and keep that in mind when you see an opportunity.
  3. Sharing your resources - Think about the resources you’ve invested in and be mindful of whether they can help someone else. Keep those resources in the back of your mind and try to connect them to people who can use them.
  4. Making them aware of an opportunity - It’s important to keep an eye out for opportunities. Once you see an opportunity, think about who could benefit from knowing about it.
  5. Giving them transparent feedback - Transparent feedback can be tough because some people don’t take constructive criticism well.  In the long run, you will help the people that you want to work with and improve the efficiency and success of your company as well.
  6. Being a brand advocate
    Is there a company or product you love and want to see them succeed? Think about the products and services that you love, and don’t be shy about letting people know about them.
  7. Giving introductions - There’s a lot of big talk out there. Someone knows somebody who is a great contact or client, but they never actually make the introduction. Rather than making and breaking promises, make an effort to actually send out several intros each week. However, don’t let your credibility take a hit: make sure the people you’re advocating are legit.
  8. Volunteering your time - Time is valuable and most people understand that.  When you take time out of your day to help a friend, they remember it. Set aside some time to help a contact. It could be as simple as helping them move to a new home.
  9. Recognizing them - There are a variety of ways to give someone recognition. You can include them in an article that you’ve written or mention them in a speech or presentation. An easy way to recognize someone is to nominate them for an award. There are countless awards out there that could really help out your network. It will mean a lot to the nominee that you thought of them and wanted to recognize them.
  10. Giving gifts - Gifts can be tricky because you don’t want to “buy” peoples’ favor. You want to get them a gift that makes sense and will help them; especially during difficult times. People tend to remember who helped them when they were in need, so it’s important to make an extra effort during these times.

“Remember, helping others is an easy way to show your connections that they truly matter to you,” notes Glenn.

To hear more insight from Glenn, plan to attend Cornerstone’s Marketing & Business Development Conference. Online registration has opened, and please be sure and register by June 30 to secure the best conference rate.

If you have any questions about the Marketing & Business Development Conference, please contact Training & Events, at (469) 385-6630 or (800) 442-5762, ext. 6630.

Educational grants are available through the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation. To learn more, please visit www.cscuf.coop.