How To Be An Inspiring Leader In A Turbulent World

Ken Blanchard, the successful author of over 60 books once said…

“The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.”

We are in changing times…

I’ve been invited to present a number of talks lately in the corporate sector, on leadership.

It seems this is a big theme of late as we are entering a very interesting time as the status quo in all areas of life is being disrupted on a daily basis and company leaders are having to keep up with the pace.

We are seeing the shared business model such as Uber and AirBnB challenge long standing business of taxis and hotels.

We have Ai and robotics which are going to potentially disrupt the employment sector, and then…

We have social media where everything is reported and very little passes public scrutiny.

Companies and their leaders are more accountable than ever before. A tweet, a Tripadvisor post, a Facebook rant can bring an entire company down very quickly.

So what does it take to be a leader in today’s world?

When I was asked to do a talk on leadership I researched some of the top leaders in the world today to see what they were doing and how they were doing it. Surprisingly the number 1 leader in a list of 50 inspiring leaders was a man that I had never heard of before! Theo Epstein.

Who is Theo Epstein?

  • He was the youngest coach of a Major League baseball team at the age of 28 when he was signed to the Boston Red Sox.
  • Within 2 years of his signing he took them to win the World Series for the first time in 86 years.
  • Not long after that, he was poached by the Chicago Cubs where he went on to win the World Series for them for the first time in 108 years!

How did this young man have so much influence over a team of players that inspired them to do something no other coach had done in 86 and 108 years?

Maybe this quote from him had something to do with it?

“When people do things they weren’t even sure they were capable of, I think it comes back to connection. Connection with teammates. Connection with organisation. Feeling like they belong in the environment.”

Theo Epstein brought together his teams and inspired them to reach new levels of capability that were always there, only it took Epstein to bring them out.

Famed musician Quincy Jones said…

“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.”

This is a new era of Leadership! We can no longer rule with brute force or authority. It’s a time where our leaders lead with inspiration and influence.

What makes this challenging is fallibility!

No matter how high up someone might be as a leader, they still have fallibility. Which means they will…

…screw up

…make mistakes

…do something wrong

AND it will potentially be highlighted.

Our expectation of leaders is getting higher and higher which is a good thing, as it means we ideally should be getting better leaders, but it also puts immense pressure on our leaders to meet this high standard. And it comes at a price.

There are many days where I have beaten myself up for not reaching the level of standard that I and others set for myself.

I’ve made many mistakes along the way, and after pulling myself out of the dark night I look to improve and grow from the situation.

But often it’s a slow process.

So how can leaders progress during this time of intense scrutiny and pressure?

Being vulnerable and coachable is key.

Leaders need to be open to learning and growing. To do this they need to embrace criticism and adapt accordingly.

After each of our retreats we send out a survey to our attendees asking them how we can improve what we do? I also have a fortnightly coach that is there to help me see what I can’t see and inspire me to be a better version of myself.

I believe a leader also is able to be led…A teacher is always a student.

So what are some qualities that you would seek in a leader?

Here are 12 traits that I feel as a leader we should aspire to:

  1. Vulnerable
  2. Kind
  3. Calm
  4. Consistent
  5. Focused
  6. Polite
  7. Compassionate
  8. Strong
  9. Flexible
  10. Integrity
  11. Coachable
  12. Friendly

In some way shape or form, we are all leaders. We all have a sphere of influence, whether it’s with friends, colleagues, family or clients.

It’s not about putting people on pedestals but acknowledging the leader within each and every one of us. As Tim Ferris once said:

“The world is changed by your example, not by your opinion.”

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Learn to become a conscious leader and transform yourself and those around you with personal guidance from the Founder of The Stillness Project, Tom Cronin.
This program will stretch you, expand your potential, deepen your gifts to the world, and explore ways in which you can bring your vision, mission and purpose to life. Click here to speak with Tom about your Vision, Mission And Purpose. Be a Leader at the highest level
zen academy

This One Thought Could Change the Entire Direction Of Your Life

screen-shot-2016-09-25-at-11-29-51-amYadbhavam Tat Bhavati….what we think we become.

I’m sure you often ponder the life you are living and if its where you want to be. Whether its your job, your relationships, the city you are living in or whether you are living a life of relevance or not. The big challenge for many of us is having a vision for where we want to be that is NOT determined by where we have BEEN. Yes, sounds confusing I know but stay with me.

The choices we make today (which determine our future) are usually influenced by the perception we have about ourselves. The perception of WHO WE ARE is usually determined by our past. For instance if you had a very negative upbringing with lots of abuse, then this becomes your story that you identify with. This previous experience now defines the perception of who you think you are. I’m this person or I’m that person based upon my previous life experiences. This then determines the decisions that you make which determines your future. So your future life is heavily influenced by your past.

This is why we keeping going round and round in circles reliving the same relationships, financial situations and careers over and over again because of this story we have inside our head about who we are and what level of worthiness we feel about ourselves.

How do we break this pattern? This is the exciting part! What if you had a perception about WHO YOU ARE based upon your FUTURE experiences and not your PAST experiences? For instance if you saw yourself in the future as a best-selling author, award winning film-maker, leading CEO of a company, in a loving harmonious relationship, living with affluence, founder of a charity, working in an orphanage, creating a globally successful app or whatever you imagine yourself doing, then this would change the decisions that you make today.

Think of this, the canvas of your future life is blank, and you get to fill it in with whatever you would like!! When you hold that vision firmly inside your head, then this redefines the perception that you have of yourself. This then redefines the decisions that you make and this defines your future. So your new future perception of yourself that you hold today, leads you to becoming this in the future! How cool is that? Yadbhavam tat bhavati.

The big challenge now is to not only continue to hold that firm vision of your future self but to even see it in the first place! This is where the Zen Academy for Transformational Leadership comes in. This is a 12 month coaching program where we help you find that BIG VISION of your future self, hold that vision, and then make it become REAL.

This is what some of our members have said about Zen Academy:

“Thank you Tom, this session has been awesome. I feel back on track, motivated and energised.”

“Hi Tom, firstly I want to say a huge thank you for your responses to my challenges last month!!! They were absolutely on point and have helped me get through the month and move forward!! THANK YOU!!!!”

“I feel I have re-gained my personal power, and will not be shoved around any more. Again thanks for your wisdom!!!!!!”

If you feel it’s time for you to redirect your life then lets chat about the Zen Academy by clicking here.

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