I have been reflecting on my leadership walk for a while now and I feel summoned to regenerate. So I have embarked on a trek using three ways to regenerate my leadership journey. Pruning, trimming and cutting.
Just like I have been doing for many years with my most distinctive feature, my moustache.
I started growing the moustache during the first year of university so my wife has not seen me without it for most of our time together. And my children have never seen me without it.
The moustache has been a part of me since 1974. It has undergone a few changes but I have never shaved it off. I have shaped and trimmed it and it has definitely changed from a dark brown moustache to a full grey one.
Over time the moustache has seen different stages and looks. From the birth of the moustache, sparse and pencil thin, to a full dark brown moustache in my middle years, to a full but grey one at the age of 62, the moustache has gone through a slow process of transformation.
Just like my journey as a leader.
At the birth of my leadership journey I lacked a tremendous amount of experience. But as I moved through a variety of different leadership opportunities, my leadership had to be shaped and trimmed.
My leadership journey has taken me to different places, different jobs, different situations. Along the way I have encountered many and different people. I learned from each situation which helped me to adapt, refine and sharpen my leadership growth.
Henry Cloud in Necessary Endings suggests that leadership growth requires pruning – where in order to gain growth you need to get rid of the unwanted or superfluous. In order to move forward, you need to prune like successful gardeners prune their flowers. The gardener intentionally and purposefully prunes branches to make sure that the flowers reach their full potential. You prune the healthy buds or branches that are not the best ones. You prune the sick branches that are not going to grow to full potential, and you cut the dead branches that are taking up space needed for the healthy ones to survive.
Like successful gardeners the effective leader should also prune by reflecting and revisiting their vision, mission, and goals. Sometimes you need to rip them apart and throw them away. Sometimes you need to rework and renew. Other times you need to refresh. And at times new ideas need to be created. Maintaining the status quo does not allow your leadership to flourish so pruning, shaping and cutting is necessary.
Whether you are at the start of your leadership journey, in the middle of it or in the later stages, look deep into your leadership heart like you do in the mirror, and don’t be afraid to prune, trim and re-shape.
At sixty-two the pruning continues for me, just like the on going and necessary trimming and shaping of my moustache.
So one of the first steps I am taking is to re-launch and regenerate Leadership is Heart. It’s time to give it a fresh look with some new features, services and hopefully some new and innovative thoughts.
I profoundly believe that leadership with heart can be a Prescription for Leadership Success.
Join this exploration of leadership by starting here and engaging with me through the Leadership is Heart Community.