When a person studies great leaders, he or she gains insight as to how those great leaders confronted their situational challenges and management crises. Leadership expert James M. Strock studied Theodore Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan and wrote books featuring executive lessons from both, and as a result, developed a unique perspective for 21st century leadership. His latest book, Serve to Lead, is a must-read.
There may be “born leaders,” but there surely are far too few to depend on them. Leadership must be learned and can be learned. ~Peter Drucker
With the premise that “anyone can be a leader,” readers are asked four questions:
- Who are you serving?
- How can you best serve?
- Are you making your unique contributions?
- Are you getting better everyday?
According to Strock, due to advances in technology, what was previously a transaction-based world has evolved into a relationship-based world. As a result, people are becoming more important – not less important, as the media would like us to think. Employees ranging from entry-level customer service agents to top leadership teams are critical in resolving problems, building rapport with customers and prospects, and maintaining brand integrity. For companies to be successful and endure for the long-term, employees need the tools to provide solutions. For example, if a shopper at a retail store is upset about a price difference when paying, the employee at the check-out counter must have the authority to resolve the situation. Without a doubt, this is leadership – refer back to the questions listed above.
Another theme throughout the book is that there is no universal leadership style. A busboy in a restaurant, a bagger at the supermarket, a technician who changes the oil in your car, as well as the VP of Sales at a company can all be leaders. They may inspire those around them, demonstrate accountability and own errors, improve the corporate culture, advocate for the corporate brand, or provide excellent customer service. But, the bottom line is that they can all be leaders.
Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do, and they will surprise you with their ingenuity. ~General George S. Patton
More details: http://www.jamesstrock.com
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