What Makes a Great Leader... Great?

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DB - Leadership

For what’s worth: It’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you have a life you’re proud of. And if not, I hope you have the strength to start over.”

- F. Scott Fitzgerald.

People are already empowered. But how do you, “become more” empowered than you are without knowing how?

For me, it is not reinventing you. When you choose to do something different, it originates from your core strengths.

Take Michael Jordan. Many view him as the most hailed basketball player of all time because of his physical perfection. He was an accurate shooter, great passer and ball handler, and almost as good on defense as he was on offense.

But for Jordan, success stems from the mind:

“I’ve missed more than 5,000 shots in my career. I’ve lost almost 300 games. 26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I’ve failed over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

– Michael Jordan

Business leaders, entertainers, artists, entrepreneurs, inventors, students, and others worldwide agree. So how does failure propel you to success?

In Carol Dweck’s book, “Mindset: The New Psychology of Success ” she describes, ‘A view of two mindsets’ and illustrates these in an example of students. “One day, you go to a class that you like a lot and is really important to you. The professor returns the midterm papers and you get a C+. When I asked people with a ‘fixed mindset’ they said, ‘I feel like a total failure. ‘I’m an idiot.’ ‘I’m a loser.’”

When Dweck gave the same vignette to students with the ‘growth mindset’ they said, “I need to try harder in class. The C+ tells me that I’d have to work harder in the class, but I have the rest of the semester to pull up my grade.”

One thing is clear; every person has his or her own type of intelligence that is inborn. Once realized, it can be nurtured.

In Howard Gardner’s highly regarded book, “Frames of Mind: The Theory Of Multiple Intelligences” he defines seven intelligences:



  • Linguistic intelligence
  • Logical-mathematical intelligence
  • Spatial intelligence
  • Musical intelligence
  • Bodily-kinesthetic intelligence
  • Interpersonal intelligence
  • Intrapersonal intelligence
  • Naturalist intelligence

If you don’t know what your strength is, find a mentor. At 16-years- old, I told my father and mentor, I want to be a lawyer. Since he was a prosecutor, he knew what skills I needed. My dad said, “You’ll never be a good lawyer until you see the other side. You are more of an advocate.” Instead, I’ve spent my life being a marketer - helping people, brands and companies.

My father surrounded himself with books, and so have I. Go outward to find the answers. Learn from people ahead of you by reading. Albert Einstein had a mentor. Jay-Z had a mentor. Bill Gates had a mentor. Oprah Winfrey had two mentors. Listen to them, watch their performances and copy them. Research shows your ability to copy is a predictor of success.

Spend time with your peers. Share ideas, practice with them and study. Learn from people younger about technology, social media, and their views on life, and then help them by offering what your wisdom and experience.

When it comes to success, hard work, perseverance, humility, and resiliency prove to have greater value than mere talent. Having a natural talent for something is a huge advantage, but without hard work, you are still less likely to succeed.

Michael Jordan’s coach didn’t even think he deserved to be in his school’s “Top-Ten” players. Jordan undeniably has talent; but combining it with hard work, and pushing himself well beyond the required workouts, got him into the Hall of Fame, not just talent.

From books to mentoring and building on your experience are crucial to success.

Google (GOOG) estimates there are millions of published books. As a marketer, that’s how I learned about Twitter (TWTR), social media, mobile apps, technology, new trends in marketing and business, and expanded my career.

Interestingly, research suggests there is a difference between the reading habits of the wealthy and the not so wealthy. According to Tom Corley in, “Rich habits: The Daily Success Habits of Wealthy Individuals, rich people read for self-improvement, education and success. Whereas poor people read primarily to be entertained.”—Huffington Post 2016

So, the next time you walk into a bookstore or search online, buy a book and read it. Speak to someone you admire, help another person. You will feel empowered.

(See the original article on CommPRO)

About the Author: Wendy Glavin is Founder and CEO of Wendy Glavin, a NYC full-service agency. Wendy is a 20-year veteran of corporate, agency, consulting and small business ownership. She specializes in B2B marketing communications, PR, social and digital media. Her website is: http://wendyglavin.com/. Contact her at: wendy@wendyglavin.com.

DISCLOSURE: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors, and do not represent the views of equities.com. Readers should not consider statements made by the author as formal recommendations and should consult their financial advisor before making any investment decisions. To read our full disclosure, please go to: http://www.equities.com/disclaimer

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