Lead on Purpose

Promoting Leadership Principles in Product Management

Motivating leadership


The number of leadership blogs that take up space in my feed reader is growing. Two recent posts struck a chord with me:

In his post The Opportunity to Influence, Mark Sanborn points to the passing of the torch from Mark Spitz to Michael Phelps. Mark quotes Spitz’s comment that Phelps now has the burden to inspire youth. Mark goes on to say: “Maybe Spitz’s comment was taken out of context or incomplete as quoted. I hope so. He seems like a good egg, so I’m puzzled about why he’d think he had to inspire anyone and secondarily why he considered that a burden.” Building up others should never be seen as a burden; it’s an opportunity that drives people to become leaders.

The second post is from Art Petty: Back to School. Art discusses the exuberance shown by many children as they head back to school after summer break. They love learning and it shows on their faces. Art makes the point that many working adults lose the fire to learn when school is over and they get into the work routine. He says:

One of the things we often lose as busy working adults is that sense of excitement about learning. It’s easy to let years and even decades slip by and focus on everything but our own self-development.  Sure, we attend mandated training in our company and possibly even the periodic seminar to earn the Continuing Education Units (CEUs) mandated by our professional certifying organizations.  Unfortunately, neither of those formats creates the exhilarating sense of learning and discovery that we may have had at some time earlier in our lives, but lost along the way to becoming responsible adults.

Art gives a list of activities that will help to rekindle your love of learning. It’s well worth the read.

Taking the opportunity to really have a positive influence on others and pursuing education with a determined attitude will help us on our course of continued motivating leadership.

2 thoughts on “Motivating leadership

  1. As the ruler of the Galactic Empire I have to admit that because I feel that the fate of the galaxy rests on my shoulders that that it’s all on me to do all the leading, and make sure people are being led.

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind electrocuting people now and then to make them feel inspired, but it can tend to feel like a burden because I’m fully cognizant of the consequences if I don’t.

    As for kids being eager to go back to school – I wouldn’t nescessarily attribute that towards a thirst for knowledge. Being able to hang out with your friends all day long and socialize is very motivating compare to being stuck at home for the entire summer with not much to do other than play video games and waste time at the mall.

  2. Back to School is a particularly good article. I hadn’t experienced Mr. Petty’s writing before, but I can say I’m a fan. Very interesting and insightful. For those looking to “re-ignite” that desire to learn, you may want to try Coursera.org. It’s a new learning initiative (registration is free) in which users get access to lectures on everything from basic computer programming to “small business 101.”

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