Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Winter School 2013 - The Leadership Track

The second day of Winter School is called the Leadership Track.  This year we had several speakers who talked about leadership qualities and challenged us to discover and nurture those qualities in ourselves and in others.

From Dr. Chris Cooper, Ph.D. - Interim Coordinator of the Tennessee Master Gardener Program

1.       Leadership is everyone’s business (leadership is a set of skills and abilities that are accessible and learnable by anyone who has motivation and desire to learn it)
2.       Credibility is the foundation (people want leaders who are credible, people need to believe in their leaders)
3.       Personal values drive commitment (personal values clarity is essential to commitment)
4.       You either lead by example, or you don’t lead at all (the only way people know we value something is when they see it in action)
5.       Looking forward is a leadership must (people expect leaders to have a sense of direction and a concern for the future of the organization)
6.       It’s not just the leaders vision (leaders inspire a shared vision)
7.       Challenges provides the opportunity for greatness (leadership and challenge are simply inseparable)
8.       Leaders are team players (leaders can’t do it alone)
9.       Leadership is a relationship (leadership is a relationship between those who choose to lead and those who choose to follow)
10.   Caring is at the heart of leadership (high hopes leads to high performance)
From Dr. Robert Burns, Ph.D., P. E. - Assistant Dean and Professor, Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Resource Development

1.  Leaders are honest, with themselves and with others.
2.  Leaders give freely of their time and resources.
3.  Leaders listen to others.
4.  Leaders are dependable:  reliability is more important than ability.
5.  Leaders are positive!!!
6.  Leaders serve others - they remove barriers to mission success.
7.  Leaders couple criticism with a possible solution
8.  Leaders recognize that perfect is the enemy of good.

From Doug Hilton, Emeritus Advocate UT Master Gardener on "Identifying Leaders"

Look for:
   1.  Past leadership experience
   2.  Capacity to catch or create a vision
   3.  Someone who feels the thrill of a challenge
   4.  Someone with a constructive spirit of discontent
   5.  Someone not locked into the status quo
   6.  Someone  who either has practical ideas or can recognize them
   7.  Has the "completion factor"
   8.  Has mental toughness
   9.  Has peer and family respect
10.  Has that quality that makes people listen to them
       Ask:   what will this person do to be liked?
                   does this person have destructive weakness?
                   can I provide this person the environment to succeed?

Doug based his talk on an article written by Memphis' own Fred Smith, which you can find here.

What about it?  Are you a leader?  Do you have leadership potential?  If you think so, don't hide your light under a basket!  Volunteer to take charge of something!  It's fun to be the leader!

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