Leadership Principles: Principle #1

Leadership is Everything…Everything is Leadership.  Effective leaders are always in leadership mode.  They view every situation, every interaction as a leadership opportunity.  We call this the “leadership lens.”  Strong leaders look at everything through this lens and in doing so they are constantly exercising their leadership skills.  As with most things in life, the more you practice the better you get.

This is crucial because as a leader you have an obligation to lead, not just down your chain of command but also up and laterally. Leadership is a 360 degree endeavor.  Some of the most challenging leadership situations occur when you don’t have positional authority over an individual or group.  Project managers frequently find themselves in situations where their success depends upon their ability to lead a cross-functional group of people who don’t report to them.

As a leader, you don’t have time NOT to lead.  The most important thing a leader must do is to make those around him or her better every day.  In order to do this well, the leader’s focus must be on others and not on himself or herself.  This is a full time proposition.  Leadership isn’t something that fits neatly into a daily schedule from 8 to 9, or 3 to 4. 

Leadership is a full time gig.  When you begin to view your world though the leadership lens, it will become clear that Leadership is Everything and Everything is Leadership.

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