By Jonah Nyoni
GREAT leaders are the ones that love learning. They learn about themselves, their environment, people, and the art of leadership. Success is created by your habit and so is failure. We don’t just stumble into either of them by mistake. It takes concerted effort to attain success in leadership.
As leaders, we don’t win when we are on the platform, but we do in our everyday rituals, or simply we are a sum total of our everyday habits.
To change your results or destiny, just change the routine or the way you do things. The truth is you can’t reach your destiny plying on the wrong road; which is what most people do in general and leaders in particular.
Your network determines your net worth
Your network determines who you see and who you know and eventually who does business with you. The vastness of it will also fatten your wallet; I have seen this work in my life as a speaker. Make an effort to know people of like mindset. I’m downhearted by leaders who want to be known, but don’t make an investment to know people.
Great readers are great leaders
Are people born as leaders or they are made? The latter fits my mould. You might be born with charisma, gusto and eloquence, but if you don’t make an effort to improve yourself you are on the verge of impoverishment. Leaders need to know more and be empowered. An MBA is great but not enough. There is more to it. Read quality authors on leadership like Warren Bennis, Peter Drucker, Dale Carnegie etc.
Smile another mile
A smile is what a leader learns to do. A genuine smile means a lot to a colleague. Challenges are inevitable. In fact, storms bulge the muscles of a leader and they learn from them. In such instances, it takes the motivation to encourage yourself and others with a genuine smile. Eagles love the storm because it causes it to fly higher and so should be the attitude of leaders.
Exercise equals expertise
Bodily exercise is important. Don’t just let your body feed on everything in your vicinity. I have seen leaders that have become so plump, they can’t even walk freely. As a manager, you could be spending the whole day on a swivel chair, but health experts would tell you it’s not healthy. It could lead to heart disease. To be good in communication, exercise by speaking to your mirror alone at home. Record your voice and seek professional training in speaking. Communication is the heart of leadership; it could be written or spoken, but that’s all exchange of information.
Your questions determine your answers
The questions we always ask determine the response we get. This could be in trying to solve a situation or working with others. We get the answer to the questions we ask.
Quiet time leads to quality decisions
Leaders are people that always seem to be on the move, but they need rest. I have worked with leaders in churches like pastors, bishops et cetera and some of them have faced divorce because they are always alienated from their families because of work. Have quality time to refresh, refill, and review. One best way to do that is to have time in prayer away from people.
Why not listen, look and learn?
The purpose of a leader is not to give commands and be in control, but should be courteous and ready to listen, look and learn.
Contentment shouldn’t stop the leader
Success is some people’s enemy. Some leaders stop and bask in their past success. The trends are changing, the rules of the games are shifting and you can’t afford to use the Shakespearian phenomenon to tackle today’s issues.
Aim higher every day! Look for a new opportunity! Invent something new!
Motivation tickles their soul
“What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity? Our attitude towards it. Every opportunity has a difficulty and every difficulty has an opportunity” (J Sidlow Baxter in the book Awake my Heart).
A leader has to empty his mind of all negative and fill it with proper motivation.
A leader has to wake up daily and say, this is the day that the Lord has made and I will be glad in it. Listen to motivation for greatness and excellence. Create a mental picture of success. See the best and expect the best from your efforts. And you will win!
They wake up early and catch the fattest
As a leader, wake up early, have a quiet time, review your previous plans, and plan for your day. Have at least five things on your to-do-list that you are going to accomplish for the day. Some people just break into a day without its blueprint. Situations don’t have to set the agenda for you but set the agenda for that day. That’s what leaders do! They are not driven by situations, but they drive situations!
Parting shot: Great leaders are a result of what they purpose to do daily for the benefit of themselves, those around them, and for the next generation. Greatness is not a matter of what happens in your lifetime, but how you strive to be part of what happens so as to cause positive change.