[March 7, 2020] As I sit in my comfortable armchair watching cable news, I watch many politicians pointing fingers to who they believe is responsible for the spread of the Coronavirus. At first, they blamed China and their leaders, then it was U.S. President Trump, and now they are accusing local health officials of allowing more outbreaks. “Confusion” is the word of the day and why I am laying out 15 leadership truths for us to contemplate.
I’m reminded of Henry Ford’s famous quote, “Don’t find fault, find a remedy.” If you see a problem, fix it, and if you can’t fix it, find a solution. Simple in concept but not so easy to do. The reason, I think, of it being difficult is to see the problem clearly and then find a path through the minefield of competing ideas.
Leaders must be ready. In the Boy Scouts, we call it being prepared. Here are 15 things that leaders can do to make themselves ready for seeing the problem and getting to the solutions:
- Remember, you are nowhere near where you could be.
- Be happy for people who share their good news with you.
- Treat yourself like you matter.
- Treat others like they matter.
- Take action, even when doing nothing seems to be the better choice.
- Look for and act in a positive manner that makes things better (make your bed).
- The meaning of life is found in adopting responsibility.
- Figure out what you want in life and aim for it.
- Make a schedule, not one that is tyrannical, but follow it.
- Think about what you would like to be in 3 to 5 years from now.
- Reorient your life in every way to make the probability that would occur.
- Identify those things in your life that could screw you up.
- Have a vision; for family, friends, career, education, time outside work, etc.
- Expose yourself regularly to things to which you are afraid.
- Setup goals you value.
Leaders are most often unprepared even for the smallest of problematic events. Getting caught unawares is a clear demonstration of a leader’s serious fault. This is why an articulated vision is so important.
While we all relax a little on this Saturday morning, remember that others are stepping out ahead of everyone else to get an edge on the competition. If you want to be one of them, a “go-getter,” then sitting here won’t cut it. Go out into the world.