Our hearts are tender and should always be kept pure at all times. If not, things such as greed, lust, bitterness, un-forgiveness, resentment, etc. could clog it up and turn us into a contemptuous cynical being that no-one wants to be around. This list also includes the “unhealthy” independence. I’m beginning to accept that being independent is a trait that demonstrates that one loves to roll (or fly) solo and does not need anyone. It is also a false sense of independence. A blog for another day.
Dr. Graves has something to say not only about the unhealthy independence, but also the storms (or tests) of our hearts.
The tender heart can grow cold and callous if left untended. We need to do a regular healthy check. “Search me oh God and see if there be any iniquity in me” (Psalm 51)
I love to receive Dr. Steve Graves’s articles and read how he “weaves themes of strategy, leadership and faith together.” I’ve shared couple or more of his articles previously. In this article, Dr. Graves asks five questions based on the heart:
Where can you give this week and what can you give away?
Where do you need to flee today?
Who do you need to forgive this week?
Are you suffering from unhealthy independence?
Where do you need to share credit?
I could do away with the unhealthy independence which, for the longest time, I didn’t see as unhealthy prior to now. You know, you cultivate the attitude of not wanting to bother anyone if that was all you heard as a child. Now I know better and have to be intentional about asking for help.
Your turn. Which of the questions resonate with you. I hope you love the article.
Sounds like a Philosophical Tuesday with my images, right? 😊 Yep, we’re going there today!
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Do you have virtues that you live by or are known for?
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Sharing Dr. Steve Graves’ (SG) Six Timeless Virtues. He is a strategic leadership consultant that I stumbled upon. Check out his website for proven faith-led strategies.
Here are SG‘s six virtues:
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We acknowledge that there are tons of virtues available to each of us. Your list might differ from Dr. Graves’s as the list below shows.
Only three of the nine (9) virtues listed are also on Dr. Graves’s list. Yet there are more virtues available. Which one(s) are your favorite(s)?
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While some have said that Patience is the mother of all virtues, others believe that it is Courage/Fortitude; yet some argue that it is Gratitude.
Whether you agree on any of these as the greatest, the mother or father, or parent of all virtues, I believe that what is most important is asking yourself “what virtue(s) am I living by or would like to be known for?” Make your list today, cultivate those virtues, and make the decision to live by them.
The D-Daywas November 3rd, 2020. It was a historical day in the United States of America. It was a day for the people to choose who would lead them for the next four years. It was also a day of unprecedented voter turnout. But, wait a minute.
Pre-D-Day was marked with aggressive campaign in every sector and way imaginable. Voter registration was brought to your doorsteps (or in your face); one need not have to do much. The organizing was excellently done. If you lived in the United States and had been unawares or asleep, you would indeed be woke! Any wonder why the voter turnout was unprecedented? But, wait a minute.
What happened and why are the votes still hanging; or is’t the presidency (or President) that’s still hanging? It depends on the way you view it.
. . .
Human beings love to congregate; they also love the bandwagon and to groupthink. I hate both. It appears that we do not don our thinking caps when we hop on the band wagon. I get it, no-one likes to stand alone while everyone else is on the other side of the room. Nor does anyone like to think they might be wrong being on the opposite minority side. The bold ones who choose to opt out are viewed as loners. But, wait a minute, has anyone ever considered that the majority could be wrong? I thought about a time when the majority was wrong and came up with two times; the first one was in the Bible when Moses sent his men to go and search (spy) the land of Canaan:
"and see the land, what it is; and the people that dwelleth therein, whether they be strong or weak, few or many ... whether it be good or bad ... fat or lean ... and be of good courage, and bring of the fruit of the land." (Numbers 13 & 14)
Of the twelve (12) (or thirteen (13) depending on the Bible version), only two men, Joshua and Caleb, brought back good news declaring that “the land, which we passed through to search it, is an exceeding good land … a land flowing with milk and honey.” The rest of the men unfortunately stated that the land was full of giants and that they were like grasshoppers in their sight! Whose report would you as a person believe?
The other one was remembering former Vice President Al Gore who championed the cause for a climate change awareness while warning that we need to be cognizant of our environment. At the time, no-one believed him. Or rather, only a handful of people listened to him then. It was like waking up and recounting a dream and someone yelling out to you, “what did you eat last night – pizza?!” Fast forward two decades later, what do we have? Not only was Al Gore right, he won a Nobel Prize (jointly with the IPCC) for his role on climate change activism.
The point is that the majority can be wrong. And many a time, the majority is wrong, but we all realize it a little bit too late when the harm has already been done!
“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to reform (or pause and reflect).”
― Mark Twain
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Mr. Donald Trump
Without doubt, incumbent President Donald Trump has stepped on numerous toes; what with his policies on immigration, America first, ending reliance on China and its manufacturing, pro life, anti-climate change, putting down Africans/Nigerians (remember his s___thole statement?!), etc. The list is endless. Oh, wait a minute, what with his sarcasms that stir division and tend to promote racism and white supremacy? Or his stance during the police-citizen unrest?!
Well, I do not condone any of the above. When President Trump made the derogatory statement about Africans/Nigerians, I tweeted “Mr. President just exhibited his global ignorance!” A leader should not be divisive, but tactically use wisdom to unite his people. Mr. Trump, respectfully, appears to lack both tact and diplomacy that is expected of a leader. Is that a good or bad thing? I don’t know. But this one thing I know, I can bet that he does not talk about or to his family and/or close friends the way he had been since assumption of Office of the President. I must say that he has gotten better though. He was worse at the onset.
Being blunt and bold are strengths, which I admit that Mr. Trump possesses. Boldness to pursue your enemies and stand in the midst of attacks. Bluntness to speak your mind openly and truthfully when others would otherwise shut up, in order not to rock the boat, is surprisingly a gift from God. Unfortunately, these gifts also can bring enmity, cause one to be tremendously disliked and unpopular. I must say that God is a God of order. He gave the gifts and we must return to Him to enquire about how to exercise the gift and the order to follow.
"when I was a child I spoke as a child, I felt and thought as a child; now that I became a man, I have put away childish things." - 1 Corinthians 13:11
Most of us don’t. We feel that everything God reveals to us has to be uttered. Yes, they have to be uttered but at the proper time. I have been guilty of this too. Timing is important. When in one’s infancy of awareness and demonstration of the gift, it is not uncommon to err on the side of untimely utterances. Remember the story of Joseph in the Bible who uttered his dream prematurely? The dream came true, but not without Joseph going through the pit and valley. We all have to go through this process before we mature in our gifts. In my humble opinion, this is what I deduced that Mr. President went through. Yes, he’s an adult, but I doubt if he was a practicing Christian on assumption of office. The gifts of God, though irrevocable, are not dependent on physical age.
The age we acknowledge and begin exercising the gift is significant.
Mr. Trump was also not a career politician. As such his craft was not developed for the Office of the President. He was a shrewd business man and real estate mogul. Many would remember him for his TV series, “The Apprentice” where he fired incompetent contestants. As a private man, he brought the mentality of the TV show to Office and stepped on everyone’s toes; even his allies! He even stepped on his own toes and we watched him contradict himself at times. We could go on and on, but these two observed points, in my opinion, clearly caused Mr. President his gazillion enemies. But, wait a minute.
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Mr. Joe Biden
Mr. Joe Biden is a career politician and running for the Office of the President, after having being Vice President, seems like the ultimate next step. He allegedly won the race by a surprising landslide. We all watched it on the television, right? And those mail-in ballots kept seeping in and in and in. At one point, the votes were close. Suddenly, the gap widened. This is not an unusual occurrence. And yes, the people are tired and want a change and will do anything to embrace Mr. Biden and Kamala Harris. I believe that Kamala helped secured the votes. But, wait a minute.
Is the duo of Joe Biden (JB) and Kamala Harris (KH) better than that of Donald Trump (DT) and Mike Pence (MP)? I must look stupid now asking that question. Pardon my naivety. But, if past performance is a predictor of future performance, I propose to you that the people will soon get tired of both JB and KH and will be yearning for another duo. At this point, anyone other than DT is welcomed.
The Associated Press (AP) declared JB the winner. Looks like AP is rejoicing over the President’s defeat. And yes, DT stepped on their (AP) toes too – remember the ranting about the fake media? So it’s not surprising that they were swift to declare DT out of office. But, wait a minute.
I grew up with the saying that “when America sneezes, the whole world catches a cold.” The saying parades United States of America (U.S.A.) as the world super-power. Another saying was that “U.S.A. is the United Nations.”
Many things have changed since growing up and whether America is still the superpower or the United Nations is debatable today. But one thing I know for sure (credit to Oprah!) is that when America’s President tests positive for COVID-19, the whole world pays attention!
It is “hot” news. Freaking hot it interrupted every program and was top news item on every channel!
What is COVID-19?
COVID-19 is a pandemic virus currently plaguing the world. It “is caused by a coronavirus called SARS-CoV-2. Older adults and people who have severe underlying medical conditions like heart or lung disease or diabetes seem to be at higher risk for developing more serious complications from COVID-19 illness.”
A lot has been said about the deadly virus. More information can be obtained from the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or your local health departments.
But No …!
But, No, COVID-19 can’t touch Mr. President. Mr. President is either immune to it or has grown antibodies. If Mr. President, and First Lady, hadn’t tweeted from their verified accounts, I would have argued it as a rumor.
But Yes …!
Yes, millions might wish Mr. President ill-luck because he has not lead by example. As the nation’s leader, asking everyone to wear a mask and exercise safe-distancing, when you and your entire team and family don’t and aren’t, is hypocritical. But, Yes, Mr. President didn’t believe in the pandemic virus and wouldn’t compel his team to abide by the medical directives. Neither was he enthused to keep businesses closed to mitigate the spread.
But now Mr. President and unfortunately his wife, and who knows how many more of his family and team, have gotten a taste of COVID-19 thus feeling a dose of the masses’ experiences.
Yes, several would even say that Mr. President deserves it. Maybe? I don’t know. That Mr. President had, and continues to, step on toes, both individuals and groups and coalitions, is an understatement.
That Mr. President vocalizes national division and is semantically abrasive is unfitting of any leader; moreso, the leader of the U.S.A..
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Personally, I don’t agree with the tone and/or manner that Mr. President had disseminated some information. But, to require a 70+ year-old man (or woman) (that is, a septuagenarian … my blogger sister-friend, NDA, lent me the word lol) to change, and for us to see immediate and visible impact within four years, is tantamount to a miracle. How many of us have spouses or parents whom we’re tired of expecting change from? “You just can’t teach an old dog new tricks” is aptly.
And the last time I checked and heard, the only criteria to be the President of the United States of America was that the person had to be a citizen. There were no other skills, values, or qualities needed or recommended, right? Let’s cut Mr.. President some slack, people.
I’m not advocating for Mr. President but I do believe in
“supplication, intercession, and prayer, with thanksgiving, be made for those in authority over us …” 1 Timothy 1-3)
Needless to say, we all might have been responsible for the way Mr. President had been leading!
Did I just say that?!
That wasn’t where I was going with this. Pardon the digress.
Pray. Pray. Pray.
Anyways, I pray and continue to pray for all those who have been affected as well as asking Father God to help end the pandemic. Meanwhile, Papa God is waiting on us all to humble ourselves and wage war (aka fervent prayer) against the demon COVID-19 that is causing havoc to our nation and its economy.
With the same breath therefore, I ask that we be the good samaritans and pray for Mr. and Mrs. President. It is the epitome of godly character.
Here’s wishing Mr. and Mrs. President, and all, a speedy recovery from the pandemic virus. And may Father God console those who have lost loved ones as a result.
Here’s also hoping that wisdom will prevail and that Mr. President will now order his family and team members to lead by example, wear a mask, and practice safe-distancing.
Retaliatory acts will never eradicate wrongdoings. Someone has to step up to stop it with love and forgiveness.
Damian Lillard was determined from the get-go. “We didn’t come here to play.” He sure was right. Contending for the West’s 8th seed was no joke for Dame and his team.
The Restart is now over!
What a two-week Restart! What a finish particularly for Dame and the Trailblazers?! Of the 22 teams that competed in the NBA Restart, 6 teams were sent back home. All 22 teams played, in my opinion, better than they did during regular season and before the shutdown, with the exception of two, maybe three, teams. The competition was fierce but the determination to qualify for playoff was fiercer.
A few offsets and surprises made me wonder what was going on in/around Camp Florida. But, as we always say, it’s all well that ends well.
As I earlier blogged, and stated to watch out for Dame/Trailblazers, he and his team did not disappoint and probably surprised noone other than their opponent, the Grizzlies! They played their hearts out and, fought to finish, for that 8th seed. Dame is definitely an indefatigable leader. No wonder he was unanimously selected for the Kia Player of the Seeding Game. He obviously couldn’t have done it without the equally indefatigable teammates, McCollum and Nurkic; who despite injury and death in the family respectively, were equally as determined to qualify.
I salute their tenacity. Congratulations to Dame and the Portland Trailblazers.
Here’s hoping the energy will continue to flow unhindered by any force of sickness or injury as they face the LA Lakers on Tuesday, August 18, for Round 1 of the 2019-20 Playoff.
Honorable mention is due to the Rookie, Ja Morant. He’s sure on his way for the bigger and better. Here’s hoping that he wins the Rookie Award, which could have been a difficult choice to make had Zion W. played as expected in the Restart. Zion’s efforts, or lack thereof, makes the award an easier one to choose.
This blog was posted by Mitch Ditkoff, at idealchampions.com, on June 26, 2020.
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Thankfully the WordPress family doesn’t have this problem as we freely share our best practices with one another. But for those still in the workforce, sharing best practices can be a BIG problem as everyone wants to own the “subject-matter expert,” “go-to person” title. Seems like folks think they would lose by sharing. Little do these people realize that “knowledge shared is knowledge squared.” – Carl Sandburg
Why do think people don’t share their knowledge or best practices? Read Ditkoff’s blog, checkout his website, and let’s learn why people hoard them. I hope you enjoy the blog.
“If you are a member of a team, business, school, or volunteer organization, there’s a good chance you want whatever project you are working on to succeed. Yes? Towards that end, you work hard, think hard, generate ideas, go to meetings, fight fires, and (hopefully) learn from your mistakes. If you are like most people, you sometimes get together with your team and talk about ways to increase your odds of success.
Still, there’s a good chance you may be overlooking one of the simplest, most effective ways to make progress — and that is the sharing of best practices.
“Best practices“, a much written about topic in the business literature, is really nothing more than a two-word euphemism for “what works” — the efforts you and your colleagues make that are already contributing to your success. The good stuff. Curiously, however, “best practices” are rarely shared in most organizations and, even when they are, they are not shared effectively. Why? There are ten main reasons.
TEN REASONS WHY BEST PRACTICES ARE NOT SHARED
Command and Control: The leaders of most enterprises, even if they won’t admit it, aren’t really committed to people sharing their ideas with each other. It sounds strange, but it’s true. Why does this phenomenon exist? Because ideas, freely shared, often end up “rocking the boat.” Old ways of doing things get challenged. The status quo gets confronted. New possibilities need to be considered, evaluated, and funded. Or not funded. More emails abound. More opinions. More disagreements. More meetings. Cranky-inducing stuff.
No Clear, Compelling Vision of Success: If people, working on same project, aren’t on the same page about WHY they are working together and WHY they get out of bed in the morning, it is unlikely that they will be motivated enough to go beyond the “same old, same old” syndrome. Without a clear, compelling vision to motivate them beyond the call of duty, many people end up just going through the motions. Rote takes precedence. Old habits rule. Mediocrity prevails.
No Sense of Interdependence: People will not take the time to share their insights, ideas, and best practices with each other if there is no recognition of the need to collaborate. If teamwork is not a clearly articulated (and reinforced) organizational value, there will be very little chance that the people doing the work are going to make the effort to connect with each other.
Lack of Trust and Appreciation: People may recognize the need to collaborate with each other, but they may not like or trust each other. It takes effort to reach out to other people — especially people who are different than you. Sometimes, it’s a risk, especially for introverts. Plus, if people are working in remote locations, in different time zones, the degree of difficulty increases. Without trust and a genuine appreciation for the perspective of others, best practices will rarely, if ever, be shared.
No Clarity About What a Best Practice Is: If you ask me to bring a tuna fish sandwich to a meeting, I can do that. But if you ask me to bring a “best practice”, who knows what you’ll get. If you want best practices to be shared in your organization, be very clear about what you are asking people to communicate.
No Intention. No Agreement. No Buy-In: It’s fine to generically request people to share their best practices, but unless your request is understood, honored, and owned. it’s just fairy dust. People are busy. People are maxed. You asking them to do one more thing will likely be met with head nods at best. So, if you want to make this best practice sharing thing real, you will need to make the effort to build a case for it and give people a chance to commit to it from an authentic place.
Fear of Judgment: Some people have a truckload of best practices to share, but they are sometimes concerned that other people may not think their best practices are so hot. Or, if they’ve done something they think is truly innovative, they may be concerned that others will judge them for not asking permission or going one bridge too far. The result? They clam up and keep things to themselves.
The Perception of Lack of Time: Face it. We live in an ADD world. Even the fact that you have read this far is astounding. If a person thinks they have no time, there is very little chance they are going to say YES to a “best practice sharing process” that will take some time — even if the process, itself, will yield ideas that will save them time and radically increase their odds of success.
Lame Listening: The sharing of best practices requires two things: someone to speak and someone to listen. Most of us, of course, would rather speak than listen. If you and your team are committed to sharing what you are learning with each other, make sure that listening — real listening — is baked into the process.
No Platform: Sharing best practices with other people requires some kind of communication method or platform. If your team does not have a reliable way to share what they are learning, it’s doubtful they will. What platform might work best for your team? Group skype calls? One-on-one phone calls? Monthly meetings? Email? A Facebook Group? An end-of-the-year conference? A blog?
What other obstacles would you add to the above list? But more importantly, what can YOU do in the next seven days to jump start the process of the team you work most closely with sharing their best practices with each other?”
Focus is both a science and an art. The art is your creativity; how you utilize your uniqueness and innate gifts to partner with the science. Find the art that works best for you and embrace it! But whatever you do, remain steadily focused. Distractions will always come, if one allows them or give them a thought, one’s tasks will never be completed.
In the Church, distractions are tagged as a spirit. You simply cast it out by speaking to (better yet, commanding) it “Oh I see you, but you aren’t going to disturb me today or ever. Now, get out and return to where you came from in Jesus’s Name” or “I cast you out in Jesus’s Name.”
Whatever you do, do it totally with your heart knowing that you have read, watched, and studied, all that needs to be digested. That, above all, you have studied “to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.” (2 Timothy 2:15-16)
Whatever you do 110 days from today, please seriously refrain from groupthink or bandwagon effect of joining the acts or desires of the populace.
Finally, whatever you do, stop, pray, and ponder to ask yourself, will I be able to live with myself after this or will I regret having acted contrary to the truth and my heart.
I say pray because often not all that appears good are of God. I repeat, everything that looks, feel, and or sound good are not of God. Few are obvious to the naked eye, but many are discreet that will fool even the very elect (Matthew 24:24b). Be not one of those who think that God can be mocked for whatsoever we sow, we shall reap (Galatians 6:7-8).
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The frailty of humanity is that we focus on the negatives of the past and of one another and sadly forget the good of both the past and one another. Psychologists confirm that this is how our brains are hardwired and term it negativity bias. Click the links below to read more on the term:
In 110 days from today, I implore you to focus on merits rather than the negatives and VOTE with your heart for the Truth.
You have ample time to research and digest each candidate and, of course, each proposition.. Start today so that 110 days from today, you will know what to do and will do that which you ought to have done.
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America is presently in a dire state. But there’s hope still for by His mercies, America shall not be consumed because great is His faithfulness! (Lanentations 3:22-24)
Let your voice be heard; exercise your civic right and let your vote count. No excuses. You can Vote by mail. Check out information on how to now and be ready to vote110 days from today.
How many leadership styles are you familiar with or have heard of? What style do you favor or lean towards?
Leadership style is a process that the leader uses or favors and for which s/he is noted for by her or his followers (and staff). Leadership style can vary depending on the situation and/or objectives. Whereas the style can be dynamic, the leader’s trait/characteristics ought to be constant.
“The recent Authentic Leadership approach seems to have evolved in the light of major scams and scandals, a blind race for profits and personal gains and a short term perspective, involving the CEO of top organizations. It focuses on the character of the leader as the driver of positive interrelationships. Authenticity is about “being genuine and not attempting to play a role; not acting in a manipulative way.”
“Autocratic or authoritarian leadership is a leadership style characterized by individual control over all decisions and little input from group members. Autocratic or authoritarian leaders typically make choices based on their ideas and judgments and rarely accept advice (or input) from followers.”
“Bureaucratic leadership is one of the leadership styles postulated by Max Weber in 1947. It is a system of management whereby employees are made to follow specific rules and lines of authority created by the superiors. In other words, these set of leaders function based on official regulations fixed by higher authorities within the organization.”
“Under bureaucratic leadership, a leader believes in structured procedures and ensure that his or her employees follow procedures exactly.”
“Charismatic leaders are essentially very skilled communicators – individuals who are verbally eloquent, but also able to communicate to followers on a deep, emotional level. They can articulate a compelling or captivating vision, and to arouse strong emotions in followers.”
“Collaborative leadership is the type of leadership required to get effective and efficient results across internal or external organizational boundaries. A collaborative leader invests time to build relationships, constructively handles conflicts, and share control … collaborative leadership recognizes that power is greatest in a collective team.”
Contrarian (as written by USC on behalf of, and on establishing a scholarship in the author’s (Steven Sample) name)
“A contrarian leader, as defined by Sample, is one who sees situations from his/her unique point of view and who finds genuinely new solutions to the challenges facing his organization …” I read The Contrarian’s Guide to Leadership book and highly recommend it. There’s a lot more to my brief curation. Of course, same applies to the other styles, but since I haven’t read the specific book titles, I cannot attest to nor recommend it 🙂
“The word democracy means “rule by the people” and it has its roots in ancient Greece where democracy, as we have come to know it today, started from. The basic idea is that the people hold the power to decide who leads them instead of someone ruling over them, such as in tyranny or oligarchy … The democratic style also referred to as participative leadership, involved the subordinates in the decision-making. The leader and the subordinates shared an equal voice with no hierarchy. Both the leader and the subordinates were equally subject to appraisal, with strong feedback structures in place.”
“Relational Leadership is defined as a relational process of people together attempting to accomplish change or make a difference to benefit the common good. This philosophy would value being ethical and inclusive. It would acknowledge the diverse talents of group members and trust the process to bring good thinking to the socially responsible changes group members agree they want to work toward. Relationships are the key to leadership.”
“The servant-leader is servant first… It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Servant leadership is a philosophy and set of practices that enrich the lives of individuals, builds better organizations, and ultimately creates a more just and caring world.”
“Situational Leadership® is an adaptive leadership style. This strategy encourages leaders to take stock of their team members, weigh the many variables in their workplace, and choose the leadership style that best fits their goals and circumstances.
Situational Leadership® is not based on a specific skill of the leader; instead, he or she modifies the style of management to suit the requirements of the organization.”
This is a style that encompasses all the other styles of leadership. It is visionary in mode, works to effect necessary change(s), apply and utilization of resources in means.
It is a leadership style that cannot be exhausted. There are tons of articles and books on Strategic Leadership. Find one that you like if you’re interested in learning more about this style.
“Transactional Leadership is also often known as Managerial Leadership, due to its objective focus on supervision, organization, and group performance … It is based around the simple behavioral tenet of motivators. Its main focus is on specific tasks, using rewards and punishments as incentives and motivation. When employees are successful, they are rewarded; and when they are unsuccessful, they are reprimanded … Transactional leaders view the relationship between employee and leader as an exchange. One offers the other something (e.g. a task) for something in return (e.g. a reward).”
It is a style that is utilized by leaders possessing specific traits, who look to work alongside their team members to identify change and develop the next action steps. But most importantly, they transform others – developing and empowering their followers to become leaders in and of themselves.
There are various new and emerging leadership styles out there which I will state are mostly a variant of existing ones. While some styles will remain with us forever, some will become unpopular and faze out.
Click here to take a leadership style quiz. For more ways on how to identify and develop your leadership style, I found this Harvard Business Review (HBR) article, by Matt Gavin, very helpful.
Care to share your leadership style(s), please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading.