3 Questions that Define Leadership in the 21st Century

Leadership Effectiveness

 

“Great leaders see around corners, shaping their future, not just reacting to it.” –Roselinde Torres

 

Roselinde Torres has studied leadership effectiveness for years. Her studies revealed that 3 key questions help define successful leadership.

  1. Where are you looking to anticipate change?
  2. What is the diversity measure of your network?
  3. Are you courageous enough to abandon the past?

Asking these three questions pushes the leader to think futuristically and creatively. With a diverse network, others are challenging the leader’s thinking and encouraging a wider variety of ideas. All of this helps by focusing on the future instead of getting stuck in the past.

 

“Relying on traditional development practices will stunt your growth as a leader.” –Roselinde Torres

 

Successful leaders:

  • Are courageous enough to abandon their past
  • Dare to be different
  • Take risks
  • Stand out
  • Prepare for the unknown
  • Develop relationships with people different from themselves

Take time to answer these three questions for yourself. I found it extraordinarily helpful.

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7 Decisions You Can Make Today to Be More Successful

7 Decisions
This is a guest post by Janet Miller. Janet is a mom of four, former Fortune 500 executive and executive coach. She is the cofounder of Jen Reviews and has been featured on Forbes, Fast Company, The Muse, and Tiny Buddha.

How to Be Happier and More Successful

Og Mandino once said, “In truth, the only difference between those who have failed and those who have succeeded lies in the difference of their habits. Good habits are the key to all success. Bad habits are the unlocked door to failure. Thus, the first law I will obey, which precedeth all the others is – I will form good habits and become their slave.”

 

“Good habits are the key to all success. Bad habits are the unlocked door to failure.” -Og Mandino

 

They say it takes 21 days to form a habit…or to break one. While the end result may not happen in the blink of an eye, these seven things we will go over today will definitely get you on your way. In the meantime, the happiness you will attain in realizing you are on your way to solidifying good practices will lead to your overall success. So, yes, you will realize a difference on the very first day, today, if you wish.

 

To most, this would seem like one of the least likely cases for long-term happiness and success, as it might leave you open to being let down. Quite the contrary. In assuming someone’s good intentions, you are allowing yourself to see things from their perspective, which in turn brings out the ability in you to be a good listener. You begin to see that their point has some valid root in something that they themselves find important, and you want to know what that is. It takes away the defensive attitude that we sometimes get when people come up with ideas that are not our own and also curbs our innate subconscious desire for self-righteousness.

Leadership Tip: Always start by believing in someone’s good intent.

 

2. Write down your goals every day.

Write down your goals every day. Studies show that writing down daily goals significantly improves the accomplishment of those goals. A good idea can also be a fleeting one, and it pays to jot every one of them down and then to arrange them in such a way that you can work from them towards a future arrival point, whether long-term or short-term. It can create and maintain vision, in which you can dream big, decide where you want to eventually be, and know the steps it will take to get there. It solidifies measurability, and creates something you can look back on as you begin to reach the finish line you have created.

“People with written goals accomplish far more in a shorter period of time than people without them could ever imagine.” – Brian Tracy

 

3. Realize that setbacks can ultimately lead to success.

While intelligence is most often a fixed-in-place factor in our lives, resilience is not. It allows us to cope with and eventually overcome adversity, which is something that can be acted on and improved. As we strengthen our resilience, we are able to recover faster from setbacks, and that makes us a little more open to taking chances that might grant us the possibility of even more success. When failure happens, there are a couple ways to deal with it, and they make a world of difference. One way is to place blame on someone or something else or to feel so badly about it that you learn nothing. This gives no room for moving forward. On the other hand, acknowledgement makes way for setting emotion aside and analyzing the failure in such a way as to move on from it and, eventually, overcome it.

“Failure is the condiment that gives success its flavor.” –Truman Capote

 

All kinds of negativity can come from comparing yourself to others. Whether you are looking at success, body image, accomplishments, financial gain or social status, all of this can ultimately result in jealousy and feelings of inferiority. It can even lead to anxiety and depression if allowed to be a constant in life. In no way does it help you achieve a single goal that you have placed for yourself and can actually cause you to stop making progress on your own goals. Instead, focus your energy – both physical and mental – on being the absolute best that you yourself can be.

“Comparison is the thief of joy.” -Theodore Roosevelt

 

5. Avoid toxic people.

There are studies that have proven that stress can leave a negative impact on the brain that lasts and lasts. Even short-term exposure can leave lasting impressions on the part of the brain responsible for reasoning and memory. Long-term exposure can destroy neurons completely, which is irreversible. To think that stress is not an enemy of happiness and success is to completely ignore the reality of this situation. Being able to manage one’s emotion and reaction to outside stressors has a direct relevance in our lives, and to avoid as much of that as possible from those stressors is of the utmost importance.

Study: Stress has a negative impact on the brain.

You May Live Past 100! Living in the Age of Longevity

Longevity

How Long Will You Live?

When you’re young, you feel like you will live forever.

Soon enough, you realize that time is both fleeting and speeding by at a faster pace with each passing year.

Living to age 100 was once incredibly rare. When I was a teenager, I regularly visited a local nursing home, and it seemed most were in their 80s. Today, I know many people in their 80s and even 90s not only living on their own, but thriving, going to exercise classes, and even still driving.

100 just doesn’t seem impossible anymore.

Turns out, it’s not only possible, but now so common that it’s changing everything from the way we think and plan our lives.

Written by two professors from the London Business School, The 100-Year Life: Living and Working in an Age of Longevity, explores the implications of living much longer than we ever expected.

Here’s one statistic the authors shared with me that shocked me:

 

Research: More than half of millennials will live past 100.

 

Amazing.

Written by Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, this book is full of surprising statistics and the implications for all of us. I recently spoke with author Andrew Scott, Professor of Economics at the London Business School about their new work:

Copyright Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, Used by Permission. Oldest age by which 50% of babies born in 2007 are predicted to still be alive. Copyright Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, Used by Permission.
Oldest age by which 50% of babies born in 2007 are predicted to still be alive.

The Implications of the 100-Year Life

You open your book, The 100-Year Life: Living and Working in an Age of Longevity, with compelling statistics and proof. We are living longer and the implications are sweeping. Are we in the age of longevity?  What are some of the more obvious implications?

It’s well known that we are living longer, and there are more old people. However there is less understanding that there is strong evidence that each generation is living longer than the previous and is in general healthier for longer. Life expectancy has been increasing by about 2-3 years every decade for the last 200 years. That means that each generation lives around 6-9 years longer than the previous generation. There are major debates about how long and at what rate this can continue, but the signs are that best practice life expectancy is continuing to increase.

In our view people mistakenly take the fact that we are living for longer to mean that we are older for longer. They focus more on aging than longevity. However longevity means we have more years of life and will restructure our life accordingly. Many of our economic, financial and social patterns of behavior are based on an outdated view of life expectancy of around 70. We need to restructure to account for the likely possibility of a 100 year life.

With a long life we will see the end of the dominant model of a three stage life of education, work and retirement. Just as the twentieth century saw the emergence of new stages such as teenagers and retirees, so longevity will bring about whole new stages of life. Further in a multi-stage life, lockstep comes to an end. There is only one way to structure a three stage life – education, then work and retirement. There are many ways to structure a multi-stage life, so we will see the end of a strong link between age and stage. In the future you could be an undergraduate and be 20, 40 or 60. You could be a senior manager and be 30, 50 or 70. To support this multi stage life we will, and are already, seeing changes in how society structures itself. When life extends you reach previous milestones (such as marriage, having children, etc.) at different times, and ages are redefined.

 

“The antithesis of vitality is stress.” -Gratton / Scott

 

Work-life balance may become more important. What’s emotional spillover and how do we positively impact it?

If you take a 100 year life seriously and calculate how much you need to save for a pension, it’s likely that people will have to work in some form into their late 70s.  This is why we think a three stage life can’t survive as it involves a 60 year career. While working for 60 years may solve your financial problems, it does nothing to solve the deeper issues. We emphasize that living a good life requires investing in intangible assets – productive assets such as skills and knowledge, vitality assets such as health and friendships, and—of growing importance—transformational assets, the ability to deal with change and transitions. While working for longer solves your financial problems, it means your productive, vitality and transformational assets are run into the ground. This is why we think a multi stage life with breaks and transitions is inevitable, with people spending time in between stages recuperating and rebuilding their strength and talents. A longer career also means that at some points you may well take on a traditional job where financial assets are your main focus but at other points you will seek jobs that better balance life and work.

 

Stress at work is associated with a 20% increase of heart disease.

 

The Value of Education

Talk about education and how its value may change.

If working life extends over 60 years, it’s hard to think of any education you can learn at 20 that can last that long and remain that relevant. This is especially true if you believe the stories of technologists and the rise of Artificial Intelligence.  Either because your industry becomes obsolete or because your knowledge becomes outdated, you will need to seriously reinvest in education at different stages later in life. Perhaps this education will in part be provided by traditional sources, but it is also likely that we will see new organizations develop to fill the gap.

It is an interesting question then what you should learn when young if you know that at some point this knowledge will become obsolete. One common sense prediction is that when young you learn how to learn, how to think creatively and critically, and how to evaluate from a broad-based disciplinary perspective. Then you may add to this with some detailed specific technical knowledge knowing, however, that in a decade or more this may become irrelevant.

 

“In the end, long life is the reward, strength, and beauty.” -Grace Paley

 

Saving for the 100 Year Life

What are the implications for retirement? It seems daunting enough today to save with current lifespans.

As currently understood retirement is a product of three stage life thinking. It is already being undermined with a century long downward trend in those aged 65 staying on at work reversing itself. More and more people are either working past retirement or working after retirement.

Copyright Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, Used by Permission Copyright Lynda Gratton and Andrew Scott, Used by Permission

In a multi-stage life you will need to prepare not just for eventual retirement but also for career breaks and career transitions, all of which will require financing. Lifetime planning will not just be about end of life planning.

Retirement will still exist, e.g. a time when you stop work, but it will occur later. At traditional retirement age you will see more varied behavior. Either people will choose to carry on in their existing roles and continue to earn if their skills and firm allow, or they will break and do something different. We are seeing a rise in entrepreneurship in people in their 60s. Becoming what we term “an independent producer” is an interesting option. In this stage of life you do something that blends work and fun together, earn just enough to cover your expenses and so keep your savings intact.

 

“If you want to live a long life, focus on making contributions.” -Hans Selye

 

I found the Downton Abbey effect fascinating. Would you share more about this and its implications? 

Success is the maximum utilization of the ability that you have.”

Zig Ziglar

32 Quotes to Build Your Confidence

Self-confidence

Are You Confident?

Self-confidence: That feeling that we know we can do it, that we have the ability, that we can reach higher and achieve our goals.

To some, confidence feels like a fleeting illusion, a mirage in the desert of dreams. Others learn to tap into confidence like a radiating power.

Don’t mistake confidence for arrogance. Arrogance is destructive, false, and breeds a negative response.

Confidence is something entirely different, armor for everyday battles.

Here are some quotes on confidence to arm you for the day ahead:

 

“You are the only person on earth who can use your ability.” –Zig Ziglar

 

“The man of genius inspires us with a boundless confidence in our own powers.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

“I found I was more confident when I stopped trying to be someone else’s definition of beautiful and started being my own.” –Remington Miller

 

“What could we accomplish if we knew we could not fail?” –Eleanor Roosevelt

 

“Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence.” –Hellen Keller

 

“The question isn’t who is going to let me; it’s who is going to stop me.” –Ayn Rand

 

“If you want to improve your self-worth, stop giving other people the calculator.” –Tim Fargo

 

“Love yourself first and everything else falls into line. You really have to love yourself to get anything done in this world.” –Lucille Ball

 

“Each time we face our fear, we gain strength, courage, and confidence in the doing.” –Theodore Roosevelt

 

“You have no control over other people’s taste, so focus on staying true to your own.” –Tim Gunn

 

“Confidence comes with maturity, being more accepting of yourself.” -Nicole Scherzinger

 

“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong.” -Peter T. Mcintyre

 

“The quickest way to acquire self-confidence is to do exactly what you are afraid to do.” –Unknown

 

“With confidence, you have won before you have started.” –Marcus Garvey

 

“Be humble in your confidence yet courageous in your character.” –Melanie Koulouris

 

“With realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world.” –Dalai Lama

 

“All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence, and then success is sure.” -Mark Twain