Here’s the premise of this Leadership Mints blog in particular and my leadership philosophy in general.
“The leader’s fundamental act is to induce people to be aware or conscious of what they feel – to feel their true needs so strongly, to define their values so meaningfully, that they can be moved to purposeful action.”
Source: LEADERSHIP by James MacGregor Burns (p.44)
I first read Leadership shortly after the Pulitzer-prize winning author James MacGregor Burns published it in 1978 . Ever since then, his insights on leadership–on connecting to a common purpose and collective needs of others– have served me well in my various leadership roles in authoring The Leadership Mints Series — 3 books on leading with clarity, with empathy and with credibility–including THINKING Like a Leader, LOVING Like a Leader, and SPEAKING Like a Leader —as well as in my corporate public relations, training and development, executive coaching and adjunct college teaching roles over more than 25 years.
In fact, I earned national recognition in the public relations field for those ideas on connecting with others and aligning on a common purpose. I ‘m quoted in a college textbook used to introduce students to the public relations profession. Fraser P. Seitel writes in The Practice of Public Relations (fifth edition) : “One public relations professional who probably summed up the opinion of many colleagues about exactly what it is he does for a living was Peter F. Jeff, a Michigan practitioner who wrote to a local editor:
“A public relations professional is a bridge builder, not a drum beater —building long-term relationships between a company or organization and its publics based on two-way communications (i.e. listening and speaking). A public relations professional serves as an interpreter assisting the public in more fully understanding the company. “
Fraser Seitel’s textbook The Practice of Public Relations is now in its 11th edition. It was one of the first textbooks to define public relations as a leadership and management function based on “two-way communications” and building “relationships.”
To me, two-way communications and building relationships is what leadership is all about. It’s all about You. Not Me. I’m just a bridge. That’s the standard I will hold myself to you as I continue researching, writing and serving you Leadership Mints that rejuvenate your leadership thinking. Let me know I how I can better serve you. Your comments, thoughts, and reflections are invited as we collectively move toward “purposeful action.”