Wisdom from the C-Suite

It is ironic how often people hear from others (like me) about what great leaders do and how infrequently people hear from great leaders themselves about what they are actually doing! Recently, I did have that opportunity as part of a yearlong leadership development program I am co-facilitating.

Each year’s cohort begins with a dinner followed by a Q&A session with several members of the organization’s C-suite, including the CEO. The firm’s success as measured by its exceptional growth; profitability; high employee engagement and low turnover; and impact on the communities it serves across the country, are all a testament to the wisdom and insight of these leaders.

Here some nuggets I captured from that session:

  • Leaders need to be inquisitive and willing to keep learning. Furthermore, they need to be aggressive about finding new opportunities for learning.
  • It is of utmost importance to keep transmitting the culture as the company grows in size and complexity.
  • The reason “soft skills”, i.e. relationships matter in business is the value of spontaneous human interaction.
  • People when they are encouraged will do great things.
  • You can’t work with the people you want; you have to work with the people you have.
  • I’m not leading if I’m telling.
  • Vision emerges from the relationships that exist.
  • You can’t overvalue situational awareness.

Which one(s) of these speak to you? Which do you need to embrace?

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