As a blogger, instructor, and just a generally curious person; I do a lot of reading from a variety of sources. One of my favorites is from a public relations (PR) source (yes, you never know when those PR skills are going to come in handy). Throughout my career, I have been involved in PR efforts more than I ever thought I would. It is truly one of those things they never taught you in school type of revelations.
So, today when I ran across this blog – “Clients are the best teachers: 3 lessons learned”, I clicked and read. The three lessons were:
The time to act is now.
My company comes first, yours second.
When in doubt, trust your gut.
The writer of the blog was coming from the perspective of a PR consulting firm. But, the examples that the author uses really hit home with me. And, with a slight tweak, are three very valuable leadership lessons.
The Time to Act is Now – Or, Make a Decision and Follow-through
My grandfather always said make the decision or someone will make if for you, even if you have to flip a coin. You have to act, if you don’t someone will act for you and it may not be in your best interest. Procrastination is a means of not making the decision. Procrastination or failure to act puts you behind and you are loosing ground to your competitors. You are not making progress toward your goals. You are essentially stuck or “dead”.
My company comes first, yours second – My Goals have Priority over Yours
In the consulting world, yes your clients company comes first; you are just a consultant. But, this is not just in the Company/Client relationship. Think about yourself as “You, Inc.” to use the phrase from Fast Track Magazine. The goals of the company or even your boss have priority over yours. And, these may not fit with your sense of how to do business or your priorities. This may mean you have to take drastic steps like changing jobs within the organization or outside the organization. But, the sooner you learn this valuable lesson the better prepared you are for a conflict at some point.
When in doubt, trust your gut – No modification needed.
A lot of times we intuitively know what the best course of action is. Trust your gut. There are a variety of reasons why that course of action is correct and you may or may not be able to articulate them at the instant you have that feeling but they are there. Stand up for your belief.
As you can see – leadership lessons come from everywhere. To be an effective leader we have to be constantly learning. And, borrowing or learning from someone else’s lesson is better than making a similar mistake on your own.