Many of today’s most successful leaders and entrepreneurs are Millennials, young people who have great ideas. Their key action? No fear asking tough questions and finding people who believe in them and their vision.
If you were born in the late 70s or early 80s, this is your time to lead. And I believe your age is actually on your side.
In Good Leaders Ask Great Questions, author Dr John C. Maxwell challenges leaders (yes, young people) with four tough questions to ask themselves:
- Am I investing in myself?
- Am I genuinely interested in others?
- Am I adding value to my team?
- Am I investing my time in the right people?
John shares these nuggets of wisdom, on leadership development, to help you reach your potential.
Do you have a sense of direction?
From The Law of Awareness, in The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth, John shares, you must know yourself to grow yourself.
So… hit the pause icon, make time for growing, and get ready to get better.
Be intentional and become self-aware, determine your top 5 values and top 5 strengths (Strengthsfinder 2.0).
Know your interests and opportunities, know where you want to go, and then look at maximizing your leadership potential with these key growth steps of leadership development.
1) As millennials, use your influence wherever you are to add value to others in any way you can.
Don’t wait to start leading. Don’t wait for a position or title. Just help people.
2) If you are not making mistakes, you’re probably not progressing in leadership.
Too many people avoid risk because they’re afraid of failure. That’s not the right attitude. Others make mistakes and don’t try to learn from them. That doesn’t help us either.
We need to balance a willingness to take risks on the front end with the ability to learn from mistakes on the back end. Then we’re less likely to make the same mistake twice.
3) It’s important to remember that purpose, like success, is a journey, not a destination.
We want to know our purpose early in life. But for most people, purpose unfolds over time. You discover it by trying different things, figuring out what you’re good at, and leveraging your strengths.
Even if you do get a sense of your purpose early in life, that’s likely to grow and change. I think of it as adding layers. The important thing is to know that you’re on the right road and to keep moving forward.
That happened to me from my teens to my twenties to my thirties, and beyond – every decade has added another layer to my purpose. Part of that has been because I’ve continued to grow. Part is because the world has continued to change. And part is due to walking through one door of opportunity only to discover another door, and walking through that.
4) Give your best and invest in people with the highest potential.
Ask yourself these questions to help shape how you lead others:
First, am I investing in myself? You can’t add value to others if you are not pursuing growth opportunities.
Second, ask am I genuinely interested in others? Our motives as leaders matter.
Third, am I adding value to my team? If not, you probably don’t deserve to lead them.
And finally, am I investing my time in the right people?
The people who add the least value to the team are often the ones who ask for the greatest amount of our time. We can’t allow the urgent to drive us. Care for everyone, but invest in the best.
5) Intentional living coupled with the right values leads to a life of significance.
I’ve recently recognized how important it is to be focused and strategic even in the small things in life.
Be intentional in everything you do – from how you approach your day, to which commitments you accept, to how you pack suitcase for a trip, to the questions you ask companions during a lunch conversation.
Think about what you’re doing and make every minute count.
6) How do you become a good leader? By leading.
I teach leadership, and I believe in the value of that, but the only way to learn how to lead is to actually get in there and lead something.
“Think about what you’re doing and make every minute count.”
You have to work with people and find out what works for you and what doesn’t. If you have the goal of learning every day, and of putting what you learn into practice every day, that’s how you get better.
Ready? Let’s Get Better!
“The people who add the least value to the team are often the ones who ask for the greatest amount of our time. We can’t allow the urgent to drive us. Care for everyone, but invest in the best.” — Dr John C Maxwell