A friend of mine is an IT engineer-turned-HR-consultant, and he summed up leadership in a single word: SEXY:
- S = Strategy
- E = Empathy (for others)
- X = Execution
- Y = Yourself (know yourself)
My take on this, not his: S and X are up to you – but E and Y are what‘s in you and probably beyond your ability to significantly influence.
I‘m not a big fan of self-help books about leadership, precisely because E and Y are so out-of-reach, but recently a colleague at work put me on to a book written by a friend of hers. This is Kevin Cashman:
And this is his book, The Pause Principle:
In a nutshell, quoted from the book: The Pause Principle is the conscious, intentional process of stepping back, within ourselves and outside of ourselves, to lead forward with greater authenticity, purpose, and contribution. This book focuses on X (Execution) and not one of the SEXY attributes more difficult or impossible to control. In many ways it reminded me of the survivalist Ray Mears‘ advice if you get lost in the woods: don’t panic or take immediate actions but rather sit down, use your bushcraft knife and firesteel to make a fire and brew up a nice cup of pine needle tee; and only then think about what you‘ll do next.