Category Archives: Leadership


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My career has been defined by determining how to collaborate with those I work with. There is no more important work relationship than the person you are accountable to. Most of the time the person you are accountable to is your manager.  I have been fortunate, because the most impactful managers for me, have always been my partners and mentors. And they have inspired me to want to be the same to my people. That said, my ability to manage up has been the core of my success. Managing up is not a fad, or a way to try to suck up to my bosses. It is a real and authentic way to be of service and do my best in trying to meet the expectations of those I report to.

My friend and colleague reminded of this today. I focus so much on managing up, I don’t realize that my people manage me or attempt to- and my best people do a dang amazing job. They don’t always agree with me, but they focus on managing up and they authentically want to understand my vision and join me on my path. I share the below article about managing up. There are many great lessons online about this concept but we can start here….for now 😉

#leadership #manageup #management



Trust is a popular and much discussed concept, used often in conversations about leadership, human interactions and relationships. It seems to have numerous definitions and meanings.

Trust is the belief that someone or something is reliable, good and honest. It is the assured reliance on the character, ability, strength, or truth of someone or something. To trust someone or something is to place confidence in that person or thing.

Bottom line, trust is the cornerstone of personal and professional relationships. It is that which great leaders are made of and great partnerships bloom from.

Without trust we cannot accomplish that which we strive for as a team or as individuals.

Often people ask me, why does my manager not trust me? Employees who feel micromanaged, second guessed and lack empowerment feel frustrated and unfulfilled. Most of the time, they are fully aware that it is a trust issue between them and their manager. Although we may know the why, we still get stuck in how to move past it and don’t know how to prove we are trustworthy.

My usual response is, what have you done to earn their trust? How have you proven to them that you can be trusted? I realize most people don’t contemplate the process behind the building of trust. Most people view trust as something that builds up naturally and overtime. They don’t realize that like many things trust is something that has to be worked at and invested in.

Yet it’s a complicated process; to be trusted you must earn it. To earn trust though, someone else must take a chance in order for you to show them that you can be trusted.

So what makes a person trust another? We know that trust comes down to the following core pillars; the perception of intention, integrity, competence/ability and visible results.

There are certain behaviors that can help earn trust, and prove that we deserve to be empowered. Obviously building trust will vary based on each individual person and their personal values and background. Still these behaviors are a good place to start….

  • Stick to your commitments: Do what you say you will do. Actions speak louder than words so there will come a point when you must stop talking and start doing.
  • Show accountability: Admit when you are wrong or when you made a mistake, and show humility when you are right.
  • Communicate: Be impeccable with the words you use and how you use them, make eye contact, be positive, open and transparent in the sharing of information.
  • Be authentic and accommodating: Use words of respect and gratitude. Be kind and polite and be willing to go out of your way, don’t hesitate to go above and beyond. Ask how they are doing and listen, genuinely pay attention to the other person when they are talking to you, and just as important- know when to stop talking.
  • Demonstrate your abilities: Share ideas, content and opinions, ask for their advice, show that you remember or have retained that which was said to you by the other party. Illustrate your knowledge and show you are open-minded to others viewpoints and take seriously the others expertise.
  • Lastly, be consistent with all these, and be patient. Take it slow, trust grows at a difference pace in each relationship.

Trust takes time to earn and small actions over time, not just words, will speak volumes. In time, you will be able to demonstrate that you can take ownership and be empowered to drive forward goals, initiatives and deliverables. Feeling empowered is a big part of feeling fulfilled at work. We all want to make an impact, be a part of making a difference. It builds our confidence and skills, it strengthens our relationships…when trust is placed in us. So don’t underestimate its importance, put the time into building, growing and protecting this precious thing called trust and watch your relationships bloom over time!


Authentic leaders focus on building people, not process, policy or structure. How simple yet right on!


The more complicated you try to make leadership the more complicated it will be to lead.

Some people like to make leadership really really complicated. I think they do that in order to put “leaders” or those with leadership titles on a pedestal of some kind.

The more complicated “leading” is the more valuable a “leader” becomes, or so the popular thinking seems to go. The problem with that thinking is this: leadership is not complicated.

While leading clearly requires a set of leadership skills there are no “tricks” to leading. Manipulation doesn’t work, forcing fear doesn’t last and belittling doesn’t make you bigger.

I have a very simple leadership philosophy; people first, everything else second. Leadership is about people. Leaders build people. Authentic leaders don’t build buildings, they don’t build businesses, they don’t create policies or processes. Authentic leaders build people.

When they build the right people and build…

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Let’s tap into this generations power! These are the future leaders of our communities and organizations so time to stop dismissing and start mentoring.

2313 Inc. Blog

2313 Inc. Millennials Flickr CC via Merrimack College

A business consulting and sales firm, 2313 Inc. is dedicated to client retention and satisfaction. As you know, millennials get a bad rap for being lazy or obsessed with sharing things on social media. However, millennials are actually the future for many businesses, and working to hire more would be a good idea. Millennial have high ambitions and stress an importance on career progression and personal growth. There would be no reason to capitalize on the many beneficial thins that millennials offer to a business.

2313 Inc. is on Twitter. Follow us today!

Millennials have a knack for social communications. They are constantly on social media to reach out with friends and express their thoughts. This is definitely a benefit for the business world, and to any company. Millennials already come ingrained with the idea of communicating thoughtfully, and this can be used when talking…

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If you Google leadership there will be many definitions and hundreds of pages on how to be a better leader, many step by step instructions, books galore….but does any of it really help us put the leadership dance into practice and truly take a lead? Of course not, because no book or seminar can create a spark from within our souls.

Being a manager or a director does not mean you are a leader. It is only a title, a title with some big and bigger responsibilities. But leadership is a carefully executed dance of behaviors, actions and decisions driven by a passion- for something, anything. Truly authentic leadership is something that comes only from one place. A place from within you, from your heart.

Personally, I don’t believe that leaders are born. I have seen too many people who started out stumbling in their leadership roles and blossomed over time into strong and inspiring leaders. Yes, some people have a natural ability to lead, but all of us are born with leadership potential. What truly gets us to use that potential is only one thing…our heart and our soul. And simply put, the only way to become a strong leader is to work on yourself. Truly commit to being a better you, a better person, and a role model. To work on yourself, you have to be able to reflect on your behaviors, actions, how you treat others and the decisions you make. Hence self-reflection is a core component to the development of your leadership muscles. Becoming that better you to pave the way to leadership means working on the qualities we all look up to; such as integrity, humility, accountability, passion… to name just a few. It means having a vision into the future, and sharing it with others, inspiring them to see it with you and want to follow you to this future. It doesn’t have to be the far away or a big future. It can be the future of tomorrow or even the one of today. Leaders don’t force their people to follow, they emulate that which others want to rally behind, by letting their passion shine through and touching the hearts of others.

I have been a firm believer that no matter your role, specialist or a merchandiser, you hold the power to be a leader. Look around, and reflect on your family, your group of friends and you work community. There is always that one person that seems to take the lead, rally people together and touch a nerve. A leader will make you feel proud, and you will want to do more for that person to make them proud and respect you the same way you respect them.

These are the people in our lives that inspire commitment, not just demand compliance. A manager, for example, any manager, can demand compliance but only a true leader can ignite commitment and create a spark from within.

I have met people who are natural leaders, they are not in management positions, but they are true leaders and some of them have no idea they even have such a quality within themselves. I can only hope one day to be more like some of these folks. None of them are perfect human beings and I don’t expect them to be, but they are real and humble about the fact that they are imperfect and they too stumble along the way like we all do. But those who I am inspired most by, give me something to look up to and want to be more like. They exhibit behaviors that I want to work on and that I myself want to show the world.

My hope for you, is that you will find that spark within you, that something that drives your passion, something you believe in and aspire to. And that you will take that spark and pair it with behaviors you honor and work each day to exhibit those behaviors. Don’t just wish you could be more like someone or do something- be it, do it. Leadership starts with you, within you, and by taking a leadership role in whatever speaks to your heart and by committing yourself to working on being a better you, you start the leadership revolution.  If you wait to reach the title of manager or director to concern yourself with the qualities of a leader, you will miss out on the opportunity to work on yourself, manifest the leader from within you and make a difference.

So reflect, think, look back and look forward. And then just be, be that which you want to be and that which you believe in, and be it with a passion radiating from your heart that you let others see…. and the leader within you will shine through.


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