Thursday, October 9, 2008

Lessons in Leadership-October

Some of you may know that I get the pleasure of serving as the President of the Pink L.A.D.I.E.S. of Delta Zeta Alumnae Chapter. It is so much fun and I get to spend time with my sisters from college every month. We do community service, participate in things like the Breast Cancer Walk, Raise money for Speech and Hearing and spends lots of time talking, eating and sipping cocktails.

I started a new thing called Lessons on Leadership for the members. Each month I will send them a blurb on Leadership as that is what the L in L.A.D.I.E.S. stands for. This month we are talking about modeling leadership through casual interactions. Here a few steps that I hope will help you think about who you are leading through your own interactions.

Modeling leadership through casual interactions

1. Determine your sphere of influence
Each of us has a large and specific sphere of influence. You might influence the people you work with, who work under you, next to you and even above you. Your actions do affect others. In Delta Zeta you influence those younger than you, your friends, the people that you work with on committees, in chairs and offices. In life you also influence your friends, your family, your siblings and even those that you interact with in casual interactions. By recognizing the scope of your sphere of influence I hope you will understand how important it is that we model leadership.

2. Decide how you want to lead your sphere of influence
You have to make the decision how you want to influence your sphere. Do you want them to be influenced to be leaders themselves? To follow? Determine how you want to lead those and it should determine your actions. Personally I want to lead those in my sphere to rely on their internal moral compass to guide positive and appropriate interactions that benefit themselves and those around them.

3. Draw Boundaries to protect your influence
In some situations you must draw boundaries in your influence. If you want to influence your little sister to be a positive, confident woman who doesnt need a boy to make her happy you have to model that for her. Negative self talk or acting hopeless about your love life doesnt model that to her. So you would need to draw a boundary that you don't talk down on yourself in front of her. Those in your sphere of influence will follow what you DO, not what you say. In Delta Zeta, if you want to influence the girls younger than you you must MODEL how a Delta Zeta acts. You have to ACT that way, not just SAY those things.

4. Model Leadership through your own actions
Your actions speak the most about you. When things dont go your way, how do you react? When you are really upset, how you do react? When you are angry with someone, how do you react? These are the things that people will model, so watch your actions. In order to improve and lead your sphere of influence you must be CONSTANTLY aware of your actions. They do influence others and it is a ripple effect. What you do today could affect a situation months, or even years later because someone in your sphere in modeling you.

I hope this encourages you today to think about WHO is in your sphere and HOW you want to model leadership to them!


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