I recently revisited on of my all time favorite leadership books:
Leadership Is An Art
To understand that your role as a leader is to advance other people in life is the highest possible level of leadership maturity. For DePree, the corporate mission is a secondary gain, it just happens naturally when care for people is expressed in measurable ways. I am going to keep this blog simple, I just want to highlight some key concepts that I have gleaned from this fantastic little book:
- To understand and accept diversity enables us to fully embrace others as vital and necessary to the corporate success. Every piece of the puzzle is necessary if there is to be a complete picture.
- Further, this acceptance of diversity allows us to become “abandoned to the strengths of others” which is a central theme found throughout this book. True leadership recognizes and embraces other people’s gifts and serves to make those gifts more polished and liberated.
- “The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between the two, the leader must become a servant and a debtor.” What we can do is nothing more than an outgrowth of who we are.
- Participative management is vital to any healthy organization. To have a say in the process is not the same as having a vote; it is better! I would rather work as a part of an outstanding group than in a group of outstanding individuals.
- In a corporate environment, covenants are better than contracts. They are stronger and more enduring.
- Workers in an organization have a right to be needed; the right be involved; the right to a covenantal relationship; the right to understand; the right to affect one’s own destiny; the right to be accountable; the right to appeal; and finally the right to make a commitment. These rights form the ground rules for working in an effective, life-giving organization.
So, what do you think?