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The 5 Foundational Principles of Leadership and Management
Darby: The first thing is, as a leader, I want you to always be curious, be constantly learning. Your goal should be a lifelong learner that’s going to help prepare you for change. Change is going to be constant. It’s going to help you continue to evolve and grow your business as an entrepreneur. If you’re running your own business. So make sure that you just stay curious about things. Constantly read, utilize coaches, training, and anything that you can do to continue to expand your skills, your knowledge base, and your experience.
Darby: The other thing is, just understand and this is something I talk about people when I coach them as well as understand not everything is going to be easy. It sounds very simple to say that, but I think sometimes we just think that we want an easy button. We want a button we can push that just makes everything easy. And there are going to be challenges, you’re going to encounter them in your career, your life. There are going to be things you cannot even imagine will happen, that will happen to you.
Darby: But looking back, I use that as a learning experience. That really gets to my next point, which is to view your setbacks, view your challenges as learning opportunities. Good leaders will do this. Yes, you have to deal with whatever the challenge is at the moment. Put the fire out, deal with whatever it is at the time, but then make sure you look back at it and determine how you can utilize that to move forward and utilize that experience to get better and make sure it doesn’t happen again to help others grow in that as well.
Darby: That leads me to my next point, which is just listening. And when I say listen, I think we have a tendency as humans sometimes to listen to respond, which by that I mean you’re listening to somebody and you’re thinking about what they’re saying and you’re thinking about, ‘Oh, I know what I’m going to say.’ And that’s all you can think about. You’re only thinking about what you’re going to say when they stop talking and we’re all guilty of it.
Darby: But instead of listening to respond, especially when you’re dealing with team members or colleagues, listen to understand. So really pay attention to what it is that they’re talking about and really listen to help you understand. The other part of that listening is one of my mentors actually told me that his advice for a leader was to listen, but then also know when you need to take action because you’re in a leadership role for a reason, there becomes a point where you have to make a decision and move forward. You can’t get bogged down in it. So listen and then just know when it’s time to move on.
Darby: And then the last thing is again, overarching as leadership, this overarching as a human being is just to be compassionate. Everybody has their own crap they’re dealing with in their life. I mean, just think of some of the stuff that you have in your life and your listeners have in their lives that nobody else necessarily knows about, or maybe only those very close to you, but certainly not people at work with you. So as you manage people and as you lead people just remember when you’re dealing with those individuals, they have challenges they’re going to have bad days.
Darby: I mean, your goal should be to help your folks that you’re leading continue to grow in their career as well. One of the things I always tell people is, that I want the people that work underneath me to want to take my job, like I want them to be striving for that. Because I’m striving for something above me and beyond what I’m doing. So I want them to actually want that too.