The purpose of this post is to get straight to the meat and potatoes of a dynamic presentation by Anese Cavanaugh, founder and CEO of Dare to Engage shared with her audience at Inc. Women’s Leadership Summit.
The purpose of her presentation was to share three quick tips to become a magical leader. Likewise, the purpose of this post is to provide with those tips and analysis of key actions that you can implement today to aid you in becoming a more magical leader.
Ban Busy. How many of you get so excited and energized when you hear “how busy are you”? My guess is that that most have the opposite. You may feel stressed or drained after hearing that question or hearing others talk about their “busy” schedules. Today’s business culture it is common that people become so “busy” with their day to day activities and lives that they forget to make a life. Being busy isn’t a badge of honor, but rather a mindset of survival from one thing to another. Just because you are busy does not make you more important, valuable, or successful. It is just makes you more tired. How you perform and interact with others is significantly impacted by your level of leadership presence with yourself, peers, team, and clients. Your “busy” factor impacts that presence. It can have a profound impact on the team, organizational culture, retention, acquisition, and general effectiveness of a firm. A great place to start is with an evaluation. Practice a self-identification brainstorming session of why you’re so “busy”. This brainstorming session identify professional trouble spots that you’ve long avoided dealing with that contribute to your unhealthy level of “busy”. Examples of common self-identification issues: having a problem saying no, taking on too much work, ineffective time management, lack of organization skills, and so on. Next, get specific, organized, and energized. Things will certainly need to get done and the key is to ditch “busy” and become more “richly scheduled” – listen to how even a simple change in the terminology influences the state of mind of hearing it. Repeat that a couple times and watch it change your state of mind. That change in terminology can also impact the state of mind of among peers, teams, and others.
Get Present. A cultivation of leadership presence is a dynamic skill. Letting go of a “busy” presence will help you significantly in actually getting present. This is because when people are in a state of “busy” they are constantly thinking of all of the things that they need to do and are missing the opportunity of being present. This impacts the perception and effectiveness of leadership. This moment may serve as the right time to ask yourself how active you are in working in the present moment. How are you with being in the present moment? If you work in the present moment, you’ll notice there aren’t the emotions associated with “busy”. Being in the present moment requires focus, attention, and gratitude for that specific moment. It requires turning off internal and external distractions. Granted, at some point in time, it may be difficult to practice being present 24/7. However, some practice is better than no practice. Furthermore, practice of being present can aid in creating the lifestyle of being present. Such practice can shift your entire personal and professional energies. Cavanaugh noted that such a shift in internal and external perspectives can have a profound influence on leadership influences, outcomes, and life. Start small by first identifying areas that take you from being in the present. Remove those distractions. Get focused on what you need to do. Then take that on one item at a time but be fully engaged in that activity. It is also essential to allow yourself time and flexibility -if you’re constantly putting yourself under unnecessary scheduling chaos – remove it. Create the schedule that works best for you. Doing so will help you get present. Getting present will help you become a more magical leader to your team, peers, and clients. It may also help immensely in your personal relationships.
Create Growth. Removing the “busy” and “distractions” that take away from being a present and richly scheduled leader tends to provide leadership with more opportunities. One of those opportunities is the ability to create growth. Creating growth can come in many different forms for each person. The objective of creating growth is to design, implement, do, and monitor the things that will grow you professionally. For example, if you know that you struggle with taking on too many projects or getting too easily stressed out, then perhaps an opportunity to create growth would be to attend a seminar or get a mentor. The growth can be personal, professional, physical, mental, spiritual or whatever other areas you would like to improve. The idea is that with creating this time for growth is that you actual do it and that those actions lead to growth. As a leader, growth is essential. Likewise, overcoming obstacles is also essential. It is often easy to neglect such growth due to everyday “busy” activities. Therefore, it is essential to set aside the time to identify growth opportunities, craft your strategy for growth, do it, and watch your magical leadership garden grow.
In conclusion, Anese Cavanaugh, founder and CEO of Dare to Engage captivated her audience at Inc. Women’s Leadership Summit with key points about banning busy, getting present, and making time for growth. Three straightforward approaches to becoming a more magical leader. These tips can provide leaders with the opportunity to evaluate their level of busy, level of being a present leader, and identify growth opportunities to improve leadership skills, capabilities, and influence.
by Katie Doseck, PhD MBA
Chief Visionary and Strategic Ace Up Your Sleeve | Viral Solutions LLC