Successful Leaders: What is the one thing a leader must do?

What is the one thing a leader must do? There are all kinds of opinions on what leaders must do.  But what is there is one thing that all successful leaders have in common.

Successful Leaders
Leadership Gold by John C. Maxwell

Successful Leaders: What is the one thing a leader must do?

There are countless articles on leadership. These articles seem to miss one critical point.  This point is on the things that leaders do.

Many articles define leadership.  These articles ask the question between a leader and a manager.  The answer to that question seems simple.  Leadership is a trait.  Management is a job function.  Manager is a job title.  However, some leaders who have no title at all inspire people to follow.

Common Views on What Leaders Do

Some leaders are inspirational teachers.  Other leaders are practical teachers.  There are leaders who micromanage.  Some leaders delegate.  They leave all the decisions on how to do things to the people who are doing them.

Each one of these practices is important.  But none of them is essential to the one thing that makes leaders successful.

Successful Leaders State the Mission

A successful leader states the mission.

Build the bridge.  Create the product.  Design the ship.  Write the plan.  Seize the city.    Whatever mission a group has, someone first must state the mission.  Making that statement is the job of the leader.

From the mission statement, all the work can follow.  How to build the bridge, create the product, design the ship, and seize the city all follow the mission statement.

If teams do not know the mission, how can they become successful at accomplishing the mission?

Missionaries

Some people wonder at the incredible power of the teachings of Christ.  No matter what your feelings about religion, the spread of Christ’s teachings is one of the most influential events in the history of the world.

How did this event happen?  Through missionaries, that is, people charged with fulfilling the mission.  The Book of Acts has instructions from Christ to go out to nations across the world and teach people what he had said.

Revolutionaries

People marvel at the incredible history in the creation of the United States.  How did this history begin to take shape?  When Thomas Jefferson penned The Declaration of Independence.  The Second Continental Congress appointed five people to draw up a declaration.  It was the leadership and penmanship of Thomas Jefferson that stated the mission.

Successful Leaders: Know Your Role

In a leadership role, you may have many responsibilities.  Remember that your most important responsibility is to state the mission.

The One Thing You Should Know to Get a Job Offer

Job offer: There are many things that you need to know to get a job offer.  However, the answer to this one question is critical.

Job offer

The One Thing You Should Know to Get a Job Offer

There are many interview questions that challenge your ability to think on the spot.  There are many things that you just can’t know.

Often, you don’t know anything about the other candidates, the salary, or the interviewer.

Therefore, you need to prepare by being able to answer one simple question.

Why Should We Hire You?

The things that you do know are the facts of your qualifications: that is, the things that make you the person the company wants to hire.

Furthermore, you not only want to show that you have the experience and education for the job.  You want to show that you have a record of accomplishment in the job for which you are applying.

Here’s How You Make It Work.

Before you go to an interview, rehearse a short pitch on how your experience shows that you have successfully performed the same job.  Some people call this short pitch, “The Elevator Pitch.”

  1. Say that they should hire the most qualified person for the job.
  2. Summarize the objective of the job.
  3. State a list of successful things you have done to achieve and exceed this type of objective.
  4. State that the reason that you are interviewing for the job is that you enjoy performing the type of tasks the job requires.
  5. Close by saying that whomever the company hires, the person will be lucky to get the job.
  6. Say that you hope that the company hires you.

In conclusion, prepare for the question “Why should we hire you? “

This type of question challenges you to think about your qualifications.  In your preparation, you can practice giving answers that show that you are an outstanding applicant for the job.  Answering the question with a positive, enthusiastic statement about how much you want the job will help seal your opportunity in getting a job offer.

Additional reading.

Privacy Protection: Opt-Out of the Sites that Share Your Private Details

Privacy Protection: How does this loss of privacy hurt you?  It can hurt you in several ways.

Privacy Protection

Privacy Protection: Opt-Out of the Sites that Share Your Private Details

Now there are websites that share your personal information.  Some of these sites sell this information through subscriptions.

How does this loss of privacy hurt you?  It can hurt you in several ways.

Employers seeking information on your background can use the sites to find you.  They can also use these sites to learn more about your family and your financial situation.

Lifehacker staff writer Patrick Allen has a list of steps to help you control what information these sites share and info on how to opt-out of these search engine sites.  He provides the specific links you need to opt-out.

Source: How to Opt Out of the Most Popular People Search Sites

Many of us use social media to help people find us.  Websites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter helps us connect with people who are important in our lives.  LinkedIn helps us connect with people who are important to our careers.

On these social media sites, you decide what information you want to put on the site to share.

However, these search engines sites share whatever information they have.  Without opting out, your information is out there for anyone to see.

Mental and Emotional Burnout: When Self-Sacrifice Becomes Destructive

Mental and Emotional Burnout:  Do you look at your work and say, “I can no longer do this?”  How do you recover the energy and excitement to do your job?

Mental and Emotional Burnout: Life is a Marathon Not a Sprint. Pace Yourself. www.jaywren

Mental and Emotional Burnout: When Self-Sacrifice Becomes Destructive

The term “burnout” in reference to job performance comes from an article “Staff Burn-Out” by Herbert J. Freudenberger, first published in January 1974  in the Journal of Social Issues.

In 1980, Herbert Freudenberger collaborated with Richelson Géraldine to write the book Burnout: The High Cost of High Achievement.

The Adrenaline Rush that Precedes Burnout

Are you pushing yourself into job burnout? Do find that you are working on an adrenaline rush.  Are you working under constant pressure from your supervisor or from your working conditions?  Do you take shortcuts by eating at your desk, reading your email on your smartphone during breaks, and trying to do several tasks at the same time?

That adrenaline rush that comes from hyperactivity and super performance is often destructive.  Your efforts for high achievement can destroy your success.

Saving Your Career from Job Burnout

In Lifehacker, Alan Henry wrote,

“Once you recognize you’re burned out, you can pull yourself back from the ledge, but it’d be best to never get there in the first place. Luckily, the signs are usually right in front of you: you just don’t want to see them, or you’re too busy actually working to recognize them. If you keep an eye out, you’ll be able to cut off burnout before it takes hold so hard you can barely get up for work.”

Here are common symptoms of job burnout.

  1. You lose interest in your job.
  2. You procrastinate, or you simply cannot work.
  3. Your work has lost its meaning.
  4. A feeling of powerless dominates your thinking.
  5. After resting, you still feel exhausted.
  6. Depression and anxiety are symptoms of burnout. 
  7. People around you disappoint you easily.
  8. Perfectionist and judgmental mentality hijack your thinking.
  9. You work too long, because nothing is ever good enough.

Job burnout can come from several factors.  

  1. Doing endless hours of work that is mind numbing or stressful
  2. Working under constant criticism and correction
  3. Not taking regular breaks to eat or rest
  4. Failing to do things that give your mind a change in activity
  5.  Working in a job that is a mismatch
  6. Working too long each day and too many days a week

The solution for job burnout is change.

  1. Take breaks.
  2. Find emotional support through friendships and family.
  3. Try new things.
  4. Make a list of your work priorities.  Do one thing at a time.
  5. Get regular physical exercise.
  6. Learn techniques for resting your mind from work: meditation, pleasant and interesting reading
  7. Watching or listening to television, radio, or video programs that are relaxing, motivational, or inspirational
  8. Change jobs.

The danger of job burnout is that you ruin your health, and you ruin your career.  Having a successful career begins with you taking care of yourself mentally, physically, and emotionally.

Further reading on job burnout.

Isaac Asimov: Creating a Lifetime of Success

Isaac Asimov: What are the things that Isaac Asimov did that enabled him to become a writer whose productivity and creativity increased throughout his life?

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” Isaac Asimov Quote

 

Isaac Asimov: Creating a Lifetime of Success

Continuing to learn is fundamental to success for a long career.  Industries change.  Tools change.  Opportunities disappear. New opportunities are not always available for a particular skill set.  Furthermore, creativity that is critical to solving problems requires occasional resets to solve new and unique problems.

On this point, successful people continue to learn and grow as the world changes.

Eleven different companies publish the books and essays of Isaac Asimov.  Amazingly, he wrote over 1600 essays and hundreds of short stories and books.

Here is a list of his bestselling books:

The Naked Sun
I, Robot
Foundation
Second Foundation
Prelude To Foundation
The Caves Of Steel
Foundation And Empire
The End Of Eternity

“I couldn’t possibly write the variety of books I manage to do out of the knowledge I had gained in school alone. I had to keep a program of self-education in process. My library of reference books grew and I found I had to sweat over them in my constant fear that I might misunderstand a point that to someone knowledgeable in the subject would be a ludicrously simple one.”  It’s Been a Good Life, Isaac Asimov

Beyond this statement, another famous quote from Asimov stresses the importance of taking responsibility for continuing to grow through personal effort:

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.”

The Principles of a Lifetime of Success

In conclusion, the principles that Asimov followed apply to success in any career.  For example, Bill Gates’ website “Gates Notes” shows Gates’ belief in this principle.  The site is a blog about the people he meets and the books he reads to continue to learn and grow. Specifically, the subjects in his blog include

  • Agriculture
  • Foreign aid
  • HIV-AIDS
  • Polio
  • Toilets/Sanitation
  • Vaccines
  • Saving lives
  • Energy
  • Big History
  • Education

For Asimov, Gates, and other people, the joy of learning creates a life of success that far exceeds the life they might otherwise have had.

Isaac Asimov: How Did He Create a Lifetime of Success?

Isaac Asimov: What are the things that Isaac Asimov did that enabled him to become a professor, writer, and speaker whose productivity and creativity continued to grow throughout his life?

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” Isaac Asimov Quote

 

Isaac Asimov: The Power of a Lifetime of Learning

Continuing to learn is fundamental to success for a long career.  Industries change.  Tools change.  Opportunities disappear. New opportunities are not always available for a particular skill set.  Furthermore, creativity that is critical to solving problems requires occasional resets to solve new and unique problems.

On this point, successful people continue to learn and grow as the world changes.

Eleven different companies publish the books and essays of Isaac Asimov.  Amazingly, he wrote over 1600 essays and hundreds of short stories and books.

Here is a list of his bestselling books:

The Naked Sun
I, Robot
Foundation
Second Foundation
Prelude To Foundation
The Caves Of Steel
Foundation And Empire
The End Of Eternity

“I couldn’t possibly write the variety of books I manage to do out of the knowledge I had gained in school alone. I had to keep a program of self-education in process. My library of reference books grew and I found I had to sweat over them in my constant fear that I might misunderstand a point that to someone knowledgeable in the subject would be a ludicrously simple one.”  It’s Been a Good Life, Isaac Asimov

Beyond this statement, another famous quote from Asimov stresses the importance of taking responsibility for continuing to grow through personal effort:

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.”

The Principles of a Lifetime of Success

In conclusion, the principles that Asimov followed apply to success in any career.  For example, Bill Gates’ website “Gates Notes” shows Gates’ belief in this principle.  The site is a blog about the people he meets and the books he reads to continue to learn and grow. Specifically, the subjects in his blog include

  • Agriculture
  • Foreign aid
  • HIV-AIDS
  • Polio
  • Toilets/Sanitation
  • Vaccines
  • Saving lives
  • Energy
  • Big History
  • Education

For Asimov, Gates, and other people, the joy of learning creates a life of success that far exceeds the life they might otherwise have had.

Do You Want to Get Promoted? Do These Twelve Things.

Do You Want to Get Promoted?  Here are twelve things that will help you achieve your goals and receive the credit you deserve.

Do You Want to Get Promoted? Do These Twelve Things.

#1 Get things done.

The phrase “[He] gets things done” is the description that appeared on “Mashable” as a description of Sundar Pichai as he assumed the role as the new CEO of Google.  The way to get promoted, at least at Google, is to get things done.

#2 Use the correct tools.

If I am fixing a leaky faucet, I need wrenches and screwdrivers.  If I am building a deck, I need a hammer and a saw.

#3 Work with the correct people.

To build a website, I contact a website developer.  To create images for my website, I contact a graphic designer.  I work with the correct people.

#4 Help people understand how to help you.

The best way to help people know what to do is let them know the goal of the project.  Then when they are doing their part, they can know how to make the piece they make fit into the project.

#5 Set priorities.

If I am building a house, the first thing I do is clear the land.  The last thing I do to hang the finished cabinets and fixtures.

#6 Set the deadlines.

If my clients need my work to fit into their larger project, I can set my deadline to get my work to them before they need it.  They are happier.  I can work to get my money more quickly.  If my client does not know exactly how my work will fit into the total project, I can set my deadline when I know exactly what they want me to do.

#7 Know the purpose of my work.

I know who will benefit from the work and how to make the work fit the needs of those people.

#8 Operate efficiently.

If my goal is to write a new article for my blog, I can exhaust myself wandering around the Internet.  I limit my research efforts to books and websites that I need for my article.

#9 Create a plan of action.

Some work may take a day to complete.  Some work may take weeks to pull together.  Each piece adds service to my customers. I can never finish the total job.  I plan to continue to add services.  My plan of action is a series of plans that continue to expand my services.  I know what I what I want to do. I create and adjust my plans of action to accomplish what I want to do.

#10 Help people.

I have a sense of purpose.  I want to help people become successful.  My work is meaningful to me.  I want people to use the ideas and the services of my websites for their success.

#11 Take breaks.

I enjoy my work.  Knowing that I am trying to help people makes my work fun.

#12 End the day with a list for tomorrow’s work.

I know at the end of my day where to step right into my job the next day.  This list helps me to sit down to my desk and get into action.