Leadership Manifesto

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To be an effective leader, I believe you must be able to put yourself in a position that sets you up for success and be able to motivate others to work towards a common goal. To do this, it is important to use the strengths that you have a high propensity to do well. You must also learn from past experiences of success and apply what worked well and avoid those that did not. Just as a kitten born in a stove oven does not make it a biscuit, a child born of a leader does not make him a leader. We must learn to lead, and to do so requires us to develop a leadership style that encourages success.

When we began the Leadership I Seminar, we learned about our strengths using the Strengths Finder 2.0 assessment. According to the assessment, my greatest strength is Communication. That has not always been the case. Until I got into college, I was a very shy and soft spoken kid who was terrified to talk in class or to stand out in any way. I preferred to fit in and chose not to draw attention to myself. I was not alone – the number one fear people have is public speaking; followed closely by a fear of dying. (So I guess more people would rather be in the casket than to have to give the Eulogy?) In college, I took a business communication class which required I read several books about how individuals have succeeded. The individuals highlighted in these books explained that the single greatest strength they possessed was their ability to effectively deal with people. I believe that that is effective communication. I wanted to be successful, so I became determined to develop and improve my communication skills. I had to work very hard to overcome my fear of public speaking and step outside my comfort zone. I genuinely believed that if I were to become an effective communicator, it would increase my chances exponentially for success. I continued to work on communication outside of class by telling short stories or jokes just to get comfortable talking in...
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