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INSIGHT ADDED (#100)

Think, Feel and Act Like a Leader

Hi <<First Name>>
Here are your latest articles, links, hints and tips on being a better leader.

Think Like a Leader

The purpose of this newsletter is to encourage you to think about a key word in leadership. As you think through its implications you are growing steadily and consistently as a leader, incrementally, one topic at a time. We all want to develop as leaders, but we also want to hold fast to the ideas and behaviours that make us who we are. Arguably that takes even more thinking, more effort, more growth. G. K. Chesterton: said, “In order to stay the same you have to change.”
 

Feel Like a Leader

Most of us can point to a significant event or time when we made some breakthrough thinking in our leadership and we knew we were growing. But most of our learning as leaders come in the daily ‘hard yards’ of running the race. Often, we are almost unaware that our thinking is being expanded because we don’t feel any different.  But being persistent in our personal growth steadily adds to our own knowledge and experience mental ‘bank’ that we can draw on in the decisions we need to make.
 

Act Like a Leader

The most powerful leadership comes from personal example. If your colleagues see you committed to change, growth and development it is not only easier for them to behave in the same way, but it also makes it more difficult for them to avoid doing the same! The world is changing rapidly and the old ideas of the leader as being the ‘fount of all knowledge and wisdom’ is rapidly being eroded. The future is about knowing how to learn, adapt and change. Will you commit to that?
James Clear is a writer with a weekly newsletter offering advice on how to grow as a leader. Here he is interviewed by Whitney Johnson, whose book is the featured publication in ‘The Longer Read’. James Clear is the go-to expert for small changes, or Atomic Habits (as his best-selling book refers to them).  James advocates that the way to build habits is to try and get just one percent better each day—something that sounds almost too easy to do, and yet builds a firm foundation for continual improvement.
Leaders Listen!
Personal Growth in Leadership is an article from the aptly named Common Sense Leadership website. Here they discuss one specific aspect of individual growth: continuous improvement. Continuously seeking to improve requires a sense of humility, i.e., that I may be good, I can be better, and that I will try to improve every day! They express admiration for leaders who allow themselves to be vulnerable by sharing their development opportunities and asking for and being receptive to feedback from colleagues, clients, and others.

They highlight that growth can be characterised by a breakthrough change, a transformation as a significant development, which is great. More often, though, growth takes the form of incremental improvements over time.

The full article is short but powerful. Click through to read it.
Leaders Read!
This short video gives practical advice on ‘How To Lead Yourself Through Change’. It is presented by Tom Lawrence. This is what he says on his website. “I want to provide articles and resources to people who are interested in leading and inspiring others. I want to help people who are not in leadership positions but are aspiring to become leaders, current managers who want to take the next step and become leaders, and I want to help senior leaders enhance their leadership skills.”
Leaders Watch!

The Leader's View

If you’re thinking about growth, it doesn’t come much bigger than this! Completed earlier this year the giant ‘Shipbuilders of Port Glasgow’ sculpture pays homage to the rich shipbuilding heritage of the area and the many local people who served in the yards which were once at the core of the west of Scotland economy.

But they were also put there to encourage more people to visit the area, to ‘put it back on the map’ – changing to stay relevant.

 

Longer Read

Smart Growth How to Grow Your People to Grow Your Company by Whitney Johnson and published by Harvard Business Review Press this year. The smart leader knows that real organisational development comes not by just focusing on their own growth but also on their colleague’s development.

One of the 50 leading business thinkers in the world – named number eight in 2021 by Thinkers50 – Whitney Johnson is an expert on talent development. Johnson makes the case that a leader’s primary role is to help people grow, but caveats this by advising that before you support others, prioritise your own growth. Her basic advice is that to break through personally you need to commit to self-innovation – the process of disrupting yourself.

In this book Johnson proposes a model that she calls the ‘S Curves of Learning’. Continuous learning keeps your brain nimble and adaptable. If you stop learning for too long, you’ll lose neural plasticity. When you linger on a peak, you won’t just get bored and hit a plateau – you’ll probably experience stagnation, where you start to lose mastery of what you once knew. Ideally, boredom and restlessness will compel you to get off the peak and back on a new learning curve.

This Week's Blog

Covid, Culture and Camper Vans #100
 

Latest Blog

...and finally

...without a little reflection, there is no Insight Added.
 
"Personal growth is not a matter of learning new information but of unlearning old limits."
 
Alan Cohen
Lead well
Graham and Lesley
This email is brought to you by The Leader (Scotland).  It encourages leaders at any age or stage, in all sectors, to deliberately improve their leadership.
 
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