Responsible leadership starts with successful trials

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By nature of the leadership role, a leader stands in front. The first to see trouble ahead or be seen at the brink of success, leaders respond to the good, the bad, and the… adversity.

“Some people see the glass as half full. Others see it half empty. I see a glass that’s twice as big as it needs to be.” —George Carlin

Like the quote above, the arguments for or against trials have become a glass that’s too big and missing the point. Instead, be innovative with responding to setbacks. Be flexible. It’s the difference between fighting the problem that’s attacking, or repositioning altogether. Focus on reinventing the possibilities not the reasons why.

Are adversity and leadership each other’s catalysts for success? Without success, where would adversity harbor? Without trial, is there enough strength to reach the top? Is adversity really an inhibitor to smooth sailing, or what makes the voyage possible in the first place?

Licensed under Creative Commons Licensed 2.0; by paul Downey
Licensed under Creative Commons License 2.0; by Paul Downey

With so many definitions of success, for the purpose of this post, I refer to “success” as the ability to find a niche, shine and actually exceed expectations. However, if I’m exceeding expectations, there has to be a certain amount of deviations, then, from the original plan.

I’ve learned that exercising my own ability to seize opportunities and design solutions strengthens my resilience to even bigger problems. Increased resilience leads to creative problem solving, enhancing my leadership abilities. However, this leadership comes with responsibility. But when I’m responsible, I’m more likely to produce a higher level of success, which generates, well, adversity. It’s a cycle that makes itself stronger.

The point is, I can respond with creative solutions. Not as problems to fix, but challenges to accommodate. I can ask myself three questions: what will this teach me, how can I reinvent the outcome and how can I keep myself from taking this too seriously?

The most creative solution is seeing adversity as my biggest advantage. Not as a hinderance, but the reason for my strength as a successful leader.

2 Comments on “Responsible leadership starts with successful trials”

  1. I like that you described adversity and success as a continuous cycle: you can’t have one without the other in order to be a great leader. We must challenge ourselves to realize our full potential.

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