16 October 2014 0 Comments

Leadership Part 6

Continuing on the importance for leaders to have a Positive AttitudeLII Blog 2

Feel Good About Yourself

Come on!  You do have good qualities.  What are they?  Make a list.  Are you smart, caring, understanding, well educated, well connected?  Do you smile a lot?  Are you a good public speaker; capable writer?  Do you look good when you dress up?  Do you have good health?  Are you good with numbers?  A good lover?  Are you dependable; show up on time?  Are you creative?  What about your organizational skills?

Work on this list and make it as long as possible.  While you’re at it, also make a list of your weaknesses.  If you are able to improve or eliminate weaknesses, then work on that.   If you are incapable of overcoming a given weakness, then don’t dwell on it; work around it and find ways to push your strengths to the fore while finding ways to cope with the other areas.  Delegation might come in handy here and I’ll cover that when I discuss People Skills.

Once you have compiled your list of strengths, work on them until they have become even stronger.  Look for ways to become involved in situations that call for these strengths.

Don’t let others rain on your parade.  If you are associated with people who constantly put you down then give them every reason to see you in a positive light.  If that doesn’t work, then disassociate yourself from them.  If that is not possible, then calmly and candidly tell them how you feel about their negativity toward you.  And finally, if that doesn’t work, turn them off.   Zap, they’re not there!

Feel Good About What You Will Accomplish

You can do it!  You can do it!  Rah, rah, siscum bah!  Every leader is a bit of cheerleader.  First you must believe in yourself and then you must believe in your goals…in what you want to achieve.  Those goals must be attainable and worthy and you must be able to convince others of that fact.  If cheerleading didn’t work why would the home team have an advantage?

It’s not necessary to grab a megaphone and jump up and down, but it is necessary that you feel that way about your goals.  Otherwise others will never volunteer to help.  Learning as much as possible about your subject will help to develop this fervor.  If you do not have an inner fire, then you must discover why that is so.  If you cannot develop such a feeling by carefully studying what it is that you want to accomplish, then, perhaps, the goals need to be adjusted.

Your Surrounding Circumstances

You may have a positive attitude about yourself, but find that your environment sucks.  If you get up every morning feeling good about yourself, but then must walk into a job that you hate, something needs to be done.  Either change the factors that are creating a negative aura, or remove them from your life.  Life is too short and too precious to be stifled by exterior conditions that bring you down.

Now, before you run out ready to change everything that you don’t like, let’s get real!  Everyone has some grey, hovering clouds in their life.  Not everything you do will bring you happiness, nor provide you with a feeling of positivity.  If you don’t admit that, then you have a severe case of Mary Poppins-itis.  That’s not bad to have, but don’t sweat the small stuff and if it’s the small stuff that’s getting you down, shake it off and move on.

But, if it’s more than the small stuff and you can’t change the environment, then remove, or move away from, the negative influence.  Throughout my career there have been times when I had some very good customers who just weren’t worth it.  They may have produced considerable revenue for my firm, but they were no fun to work with.  Worse, they berated my staff or lied or were never happy with our services.  I doubt that they were happy with what any one did for them.

By continually trying to please these people my own personal positive attitude would slip.  My demeanor with other clients and employees suffered because I was into circumstances that I could not control.  Always, when this happened, it was much better to merely say “We obviously are unable to provide you with the service that you need.  I apologize, but it would probably serve both of us better if you took your business elsewhere.”

Most of the time, they would leave and everyone was happier.  But occasionally this was a wake up call and the client suddenly found the light.  We went on to have a rewarding and enjoyable business relationship.

Next, I’ll wrap up my thoughts on Positive Attitude.

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