An introduction to Leaders in Transition
“How did you become a leader after changing your career?”
I asked this question many times over the last few years. I met colleagues at Starbucks, and asked them while we both had warm caffeine. I created an online survey. I tweeted the question, and talked interesting people who were willing to share their stories. I asked other friends, “Who do you know who became a leader after they changed their career?” I found many interesting answers.
I am a fan of leaders. I believe leaders contribute to making this a more satisfying world. Sure, there are bad leaders out there. However, the leaders I know are all trying to improve themselves while they change the world around them. Many people are just getting started as a leader, and they are trying out new skills tentatively, like a baby bird leaving its nest. I call these people “emerging leaders.”
I’ve talked to a sales executive, an elected official, and the executive director of a church. I talked to an NCIS agent. I’ve had coffee with several writers, and a healer. Their situations were quite different. Some of their stories were compelling.
I never got tired of asking people, “How did you become a leader?” I put some of the best answers in this book. I hope you enjoy what I’ve heard.
I have prepared this book with emerging leaders in mind. I know that many people have lost their jobs in the last few years, and some readers are ready to launch careers. To these people, I say, “proceed with confidence and joy!” Consider becoming a leader in the process. This book may help you get there.
I also believe this book will help coaches, people considering a change, and anyone who counsels career changers. In addition, anyone interested in becoming a leader ought to be interested in what I’ve heard from others.
We need more leaders. We need people who are willing to take a stand, work with others, and create a positive change for the community and world. In Leaders in Transition, the reader will discover five principles that have made a difference for emerging leaders. From my knowledge of published research on leadership, these principles are universal. These ideas will help anyone looking to practice the art of leading others.
One friend of mine claims that leadership is love. Anyone who cares enough to assume responsibilities to make the world better for others is serving in love. We offer love to the people we know, and the world beyond, by acting as a leader. Being a leader doesn’t mean we have all the answers, or that one is always right. Leadership is about daring to do the right thing.
Scholar Warren Bennis has taught that leadership is an art form. It is a performance act that involves other people to permanently transform the world around us. Leaders may not have certainty, but with vision and values in mind, leaders know what is right. The art of leadership is finding the best way to get there.
To all of you changing careers or thinking about it, I hope you choose to be a leader. You may bring love and art into your world.
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Express your creative talents as a leader. Send a note to DrSteve@mycareerimpact.com
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