Leadership development must begin with learning how to lead ourselves. This implies investigating the critical question “who am I as a leader?” in both our personal and professional lives.
Before focusing on how to lead others – whether this means as a parent leading children or an employer leading employees – we should become familiar with our unique and authentic self.
I often use the expression, “slow down to speed up,” which in this case means taking the time to fully understand our current state of being. In other words, the leader we are right now, including the good, the bad, and the ugly. Only then can we begin the journey of establishing a desired state in terms of the type of leader we wish to be, along with the implementation steps to get there.
Leading from the Inside Out, taking place at the Ron Joyce Centre in Burlington on Wednesday, April 17, will provide participants with a clear understanding of how their current thinking is helping, and perhaps more importantly, hindering their current performance in both their personal and professional lives.
The workshop will begin with the creation of an individual vision statement articulating how participants wish to lead their lives. Specific behaviors will be identified as those they hope to be perceived as exhibiting going forward – in other words, the legacy they wish to leave.
Once participants have identified their ideal behaviors, they will be individually measured on the Life Styles Inventory (LSI), the results of which will clearly pinpoint which thinking styles and thought patterns are preventing them from reaching their full potential in these behavioral areas.
Through a group simulation, participants will be able to see the results of their thinking styles in action. Finally, participants will be given an opportunity to design an action plan with specific steps to achieve positive change.
Essentially, the workshop offers participants the practice of self-leadership, specifically involving self-reflection and self-regulated transformation. The workshop forms a type of “disorienting dilemma” which allows participants to assess their effective and ineffective leadership characteristics and establish a base from which they can develop action plans and goals for personal development and change.
Teal McAteer is an Associate Professor, Human Resources and Management, at the DeGroote School of Business.