As with most popular sayings, there is some truth in the adage, “Great leaders are born, not made.” And to some extent, the capacity for great leadership is innate. However, motivational speaker Steven Foster says learning how to be a more effective leader is within everyone’s grasp.
Foster is the opening speaker at the Cornerstone Credit Union League’s Sept. 4-6 Leadership Conference & Expo in San Antonio. His session is titled, “Full-throttle Leadership: Passion, power and purpose!” According to Foster, great leaders must do the following exceptionally well:
Listen – Makes the voice of others more important than your own. The most basic and powerful way to connect to someone is to listen. John Wayne gave us the best description of a bad leader, “short on ears and long on mouth.”
Focus – Hack away at the unessential. Job #1 for any leader is to keep the team focused on the mission. That’s a tremendous challenge in a competitive and fast-changing environment.
Influence – The Gold Standard of Leadership. You don’t need position or authority to be influential; some of the most influential people I’ve ever met probably have no idea the amazing lessons I learned just by watching them. Know this: coercion and compliance won’t ever build lasting team success.
Appreciate - Every great leader knows that walking faster than everyone else only guarantees you’ll walk alone. Learn to appreciate the intrinsic value of people beyond their tangible contributions to the team. Get interested in people for who they are, not what they can do for you.
Build Community – Leaders shape lives, change perceptions and help others fulfill their purpose. To do this well requires being in the present moment, not expecting a huge payoff later. The magic of leadership works, not in proximity, but through commitment and openness.
Online registration for Cornerstone’s Leadership Conference & Expo has opened. If you are planning to attend, please register by June 30 to secure the best conference rate.
If you have any questions about the Leadership Conference & Expo, 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.