by Joan Burge
Masteringis about learning to be your true self and living that way all the time.
Why is it that people are so afraid of what others will think of them, that they refuse to step out and shine?
I am often asked to speak on leadership to executive assistants and administrative assistants. In my presentations, I ask, “Do you only think you are a leader if you supervise or are a manager?” Many people think “leadership” is for those with a specific pay grade or title. They see leaders as those in charge. I think this misses the point entirely!
Leadership is a mindset; it’s being “in charge” of your life, where you are headed, and living from your genuine core self.
Another point I tell administrative professionals is, “Lead yourself first and others will follow.” To lead means to Let Each Act Deliver. It means living at all times with the awareness that what you do, what you say, how you act, how you treat others, how you perceive and are perceived, all matter. You choose to let each act deliver, every time.
A senior-level human resource associate once told me something profound: She said it was each administrator’s job to make the job important.
So how can you cultivate leadership habits into your job and personal life, and make them important?
- Lead by investing. Invest in others, sharing your abilities, talents and compassion.
- Lead by initiating. What do you wish were reality at your work? Whatever it is, you start that blog, form that committee or make that recommendation!
- Lead by modeling. Show gratitude; take turns; help others; notice good things and compliment them.
- Lead by example. Show others another way is possible, even in the same circumstances.
- Lead by problem solving. “If you see it, you own it” is a great life mantra.
- Lead by inspiration. Inspire others to live with a leadership mindset by using their talents.
- Lead by acceptance. Great things take time, so don’t give up.
- Lead by awareness. Use the awareness you have about a cause, an issue or a problem to do something about it. Be creative and constructive, never destructive.
- Lead by recognition. Recognize that leaders are not born. They are made.
When speaking, I often share a wonderful quote from Dr. Susan Biali: “Be brave. Realize that the right choice for you may not be the most popular, but you offer more by your example than by your compliance.” So it is with a leadership mindset. You offer far more with your example to live boldly and courageously using your talents and gifts than you do by pretending to be someone you are not.
You will need to actively pursue a leadership mindset every day with every task or conversation. When we cultivate a mindset that says, “I lead. I am bold!” our entire lives will change, and we will be a catalyst for change to those around us at work and at home.
Joan Burge, founder & CEO, Office Dynamics International, is a world-renowned administrative expert and author of four books for assistants, including, Who Took My Pen ... Again? Learn more about Joan and Office Dynamics at www.OfficeDynamics.com. © Office Dynamics 2013.
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