Monday, April 30, 2012

I read Chris LoCurto’s blogs regularly.  Chris is a strong leader with the Dave Ramsey Company and has a lot of insight in the area of leadership.  Below is a recent post I want to pass on to my readers.  It’s a great lesson you can teach to your team on real leadership.  If you would like to know more about Chris you can go

4 Questions You Should Ask About Your Leadership
by Chris LoCurto

The decision to become a leader should be considered carefully. So many people see a position and a title and believe it's exactly what they want to do. The problem is, leading is so much more than telling people what to do.

In fact, by definition, if you want to know if you're a leader, turn around. If nobody is following you, then by definition you're not leading anyone. You see, we have become so confused with this term "leader".  For some reason we think being a leader is all about control, conquest, and status.  I'm going to tell you that if that is why you want to be a leader, you're going to find yourself spending most of your time frustrated, upset, and confused as to why nothing is going the way you want it to. Leadership is not about you. My belief is as a leader it is your job to make your team successful, not the other way around.

Unfortunately, I know and coach so many "leaders" that don't understand that concept. To them, they should be the one getting all the attention. When really, you should spend your time focused on the needs of your team. If you make them better, and you cause them to succeed, then by default you succeed as well.

Some questions you should ask yourself before, or even now that you're a leader:

Do I like people? - If not, why do I want to be a leader? If you don't get excited to work with your team, and know their dreams, passions, fears, and kids names, then why would you want to lead them?

What are my strengths?- In Why You Must Discover Your Strengths I discuss why working in your strengths is vital. A huge mistake so many companies make is putting people in leadership roles when they don't belong there. A classic example is taking the top salesperson and making them sales team leader, because surely, if they can sell that well they can lead. Who said they could lead? If leading isn't your strength, you'll be miserable. Why spend one day doing something you're not strong at instead of spending your life doing what you love?

Do I have influence? - Quite often I am asked about the first steps of leading from people who have recently been put in a leadership role. The first rule of leadership is influence. As a leader, you must be able to influence people. Without influence, who's going to listen to you?

What is my real reason? - Many young high D type people see leadership as a pinnacle. A ladder that must be climbed if you're going to be somebody.  If that's you, then you need to reevaluate your reason for wanting to be in leadership.  Leadership is a responsibility that should not be taken lightly.  The more I hired people, the more I felt the weight of their need to feed their families and put a roof over their heads.  If that doesn't enter your mind, then it's all about you and not your team.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Today Matters

Your success tomorrow depends on what you do TODAY!  This is an absolute truth.  What you do today will take you one step closer to achieving your dream, or set you one step further from achieving your dream.  Today really does matter.

Every day, we go about doing our usual thing and our usual routine.  We operate almost in a robot state of mind.  We think about our problems, what we have to do, when will we be able do it, and sometimes it leads us to stop thinking about things we could do to benefit our future.  We just do what we need to get by for the day.  We wake up knowing where we are in life, and what we want, but forget to stop, internalize our “real wants for the future”, and prioritize doing things that day to get ahead.  We often just do whatever we “have” to do to get by.

The fact is, people create success in their lives by focusing on and taking control of today.  Too many people simply let the day happen instead of controlling what happens in their day.  Here are some things that you are in control of each day.

1. YOU are in CONTROL of YOUR WORDS today.
The way you speak to others today, words you choose to use, and tone of your voice, will influence others thoughts, perception, and reaction towards you.  How you make people feel about themselves is important.  It benefits you and can cause conflict or keep it away.  It can also energize you when a happy person projects the gratitude of how you made them feel to you.

2. YOU are in CONTROL of YOUR THOUGHTS today.
What will you focus on today in the scheme of life to make positive changes?  What will you focus on today that helps you MOVE FORWARD in life towards a goal?  What will you choose to purposefully NOT focus on and push aside because it’s wasting your time?

3. YOU are totally IN CHARGE of YOUR ACTIONS today.
What are you going to do to fix a problem, mend a relationship, fix yourself, or advance yourself towards a goal you want to accomplish?  When are you going to do it?  Today is a good day to start.  Right now.  Take the first step.

There is a right time to start moving forward and growing.  It is TODAY!

I would like to invite you to join other local community leaders in a new Mastermind Group.

Tomorrow’s Success Depends on TODAY
with this 6 week Mastermind Study on John Maxwell’s book TODAY MATTERS.
In this group you will learn how to seize the day by implementing 12 daily practices that will help you control your daily agenda, make time for people you love, and find success in your career. Sign up today and learn how to prioritize your agenda, stretch your creativity and thinking, manage your money, improve and build relationships, and nurture your personal growth.

When: Tuesdays, May 15-June 19, 7:30am – 8:30am
Location: South Baldwin Chamber of Commerce
Cost: $40.00 for Chamber Members. $60.00 for non-chamber
members. You will need to purchase a book prior to the 1st session.
Only 12 seats available
Led by Dr. Billy Nale

Sign up at

Monday, April 16, 2012

Six Attributes of Potential Leaders

A couple of weeks ago I had the privilege to be on a conference call with John Maxwell.  He spent a few minutes teaching us how to attract potential leaders.  When we are looking for those whom we want to include in our inner circle, or those in whom we want to invest our time in to develop, who should we look for?  What are the attributes of those who are potential great leaders?  Here=s a bullet point list of what John taught us.  These are simply points from my notes.

1. Eagles make things happen.  They produce.  They make no excuses.  AExcuses are the exit signs off of the road to success.@

2. Eagles have a vision of what they want to accomplish.  They know what they want and go after it every day.

3. Eagles influence other people.  Other people flock to them.  They attract other people because they have a compelling vision and an others centered attitude.

4. Eagles don't live for themselves.  They intentionally add value to others.

5. Eagles think differently.  
The greatest difference between successful and unsuccessful people is how they think. 

6. Eagles have an unquenchable passion to learn and grow.

Two questions to ask when considering a potential eagle
1. Can he or she?
2. Will he or she?

The return on the success in your life will be almost totally determined by the people you choose to pour your life into.

I can't motivate people, but I can find people who want to be motivated.
I can't teach people, but I can find people who want to be taught.
I can't grow people, but I can find people who want to grow.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Get The Lead Out of Leadership

I don’t’ know when or where the phrase, “Get the lead out,” originated, but I’ve heard it all my life.  Even though we do not know where it originated, we do know what it means.  Lead is a heavy metal.  We are all aware that weight slows a person down.  So the phrase, “Get the lead out,” suggests we need to speed up, to move on, to get going as leaders.  We need to get rid of the things that hinder our leadership.

Everything rises and falls on leadership.  Without it people and organizations will never reach their full potential.  While there are many aspects to leadership, I have found that leadership consists fundamentally of four things:


Vision is seeing what needs to be done; strategy is figuring our how to do it; motivation is persuading others to join you in the effort; serving is adding value to those who have joined you in the effort.

When I see a person in a leadership position failing in their leadership, it is usually because their leadership is hindered in one or more of these four areas.  Ask yourself, “What is it that is hindering my leadership?”

Everyone is capable of becoming a good leader, but they’ll have to get the lead out.  Becoming a leader isn’t easy.  Anyone who claims otherwise is fooling himself.  But learning to lead is a lot easier than most of us think.  We must learn to catch and cast vision, develop a strategy for achieving that vision, then motivate and serve others as you are working together making the vision a reality.

Learning is not enough however.  Leaders are people who know what to do and they do it, even if it’s hard.  Leadership eventually comes down to that.  So, get the lead out and as the Nike slogan goes, “Just do it.”