The 40 Best Leadership Quotes

Ship prow figurehead

There’s a good reason leadership quotes are popular. A few lines can pack a lot of information that teach and inspire.

In A Tweet, a Blog Post, and a Profound Teaching I shared quotes from my own writing.

These are the top leadership quotes by others. (If I missed one of your favorites, please share it in the comments.)  

  The only safe ship in a storm is leadership. Faye Wattleton, Political Activist

People are definitely a company’s greatest asset. It doesn’t make any difference whether the product is cars or cosmetics. – A company is only as good as the people it keeps. Mary Kay Ash, Entrepreneur and Business Leader

A vision is not just a picture of what could be; . . . → Read More: The 40 Best Leadership Quotes

Emergent Leadership Topples the Pyramid

Stomp the pyramid

What’s your view of leadership? If you’re like most people, you have an underlying belief that leaders should be out in front of the line, leading the way.

The Hierarchical View of Leadership

In the traditional, hierarchical view, senior leaders are at the top of the organization and ensure the organization fulfills its mission effectively.

There are differing views about how leaders should behave – the best leadership style. For example, you might think leaders should be directive or participative or both depending on the situation.

Although Steve Jobs, Hilary Clinton, Ronald Regan, Sheryl Sandberg, and Howard Schultz have very different leadership styles, they all have one important thing in common – their role as a leader is to stand in front of their organization . . . → Read More: Emergent Leadership Topples the Pyramid

Your Greatest Source of Influence

Building Trust

Your character is your greatest source of influence, no matter what your role or position. Your character is the expression of who you are. And influential character is built on a foundation of integrity.

I have never facilitated the process of identifying values where some form of integrity didn’t end at the top of the list. Why? Because integrity sets the stage – it is the commitment to consistently act on your values.

Without integrity, none of your other values matter.

Integrity means you can be trusted to say what you mean and do what you say.

When you are a leader, everything you say and do is magnified. You raise an eyebrow and people wonder what it means. You make an off-handed . . . → Read More: Your Greatest Source of Influence

Heart Based Leadership Interview

Huffington Post Role Mode Articlel

What is one characteristic every leader should possess?

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing leaders today?

These are some of the interview questions I was asked.

I was honored when Lolly Daskal, a leadership expert I highly respect, asked to interview me for her Huffington Post series.

Lolly is featuring 12 leaders she believes are role models for achieving success through heart based leadership.

Please click here to read the interview -> Role Model With 20/20 Insight

The Ups and Downs of Delegating

Ups and Downs of Delegating

Where Do You Sit On the Scale?

Are you under-delegating? Are you a control-freak?

Are you delegating too much? Are you an absentee manager?

Are you erratic in doing both? Are you a seagull manager?

Problems arise when you are too far on either end of the scale. When you under-delegate, you are the only one staying awake at night thinking of solutions. When you over-delegate, you are in danger of being held responsible for a huge mess that you had no awareness of.

Three Signs You Are Under-Delegating

People head in the opposite direction when they see you approach. They’re concerned you’ll grill them about details of their work. When you talk with your . . . → Read More: The Ups and Downs of Delegating

The Images We Hold Create Our Reality

Images Create Reality

When I ask people to describe what it would look like if there were world peace, it’s hard for them to conjure up specific images or descriptions. However, they easily provide vivid descriptions of what a post-World War III world would look like. All they have to do is describe a recent movie or a video game.

On a daily basis we are bombarded with images of destruction in movies, on television and even in electronic games that children play. In contrast, we see few images of a positive future.

The images we hold in our mind have a tremendous impact on the reality we create.

Positive images are not easy to find, but there are more than . . . → Read More: The Images We Hold Create Our Reality

Mother Goose Management

Tortoise and Hare

Leadership can be as simple as Mother Goose Management. Here are 6 lessons you learned a long time ago, that when applied, will make you a better leader.

1. The lesson of Alice and the Cheshire Cat: If you don’t know where you’re going, it doesn’t matter what path you take.

Alice: Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here? The Cat: That depends a good deal on where you want to get to Alice: I don’t much care where. The Cat: Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go. Alice: …so long as I get somewhere. The Cat: Oh, you’re sure to do that, if only you walk long enough.

Leadership is about going somewhere. The first . . . → Read More: Mother Goose Management

How to Delegate So the Gain Outweighs the Pain

Delegate So Gain Outweighs Pain

If you rarely delegate, you are an individual contributor. It doesn’t matter what your title is. Leaders who don’t delegate are not leading.

Not delegating hurts.

It hurts YOU. It’s not possible to do it all alone. You will get overloaded, stressed, and will eventually drown in the details.

It hurts your team. If you are doing their work, you are denying them the opportunity to grow and develop new skills and experiences.

It hurts your organization. If you are spending your time mucky around in the details, who’s looking at the horizon and ensuring you’re heading in the right direction?

But wait! Delegating hurts, too.

Stacey got feedback that her team saw her as a micro-manager, and she was working hard to step back . . . → Read More: How to Delegate So the Gain Outweighs the Pain

Stop Waiting for Someone Else to Provide Leadership

Pride of Lions

The assumption that change has to start at the top is wrong. You don’t have to wait for senior leaders to make it a better place.

Managers don’t have to wait for senior management to start a process of organizational revitalization. ~Michael Beer

The first step in building shared vision is to give up the traditional notion that vision is always announced from “on high.” ~Peter Senge

Begin within your own sphere of influence.

Where do you have the greatest influence? Most likely within your own team. Consider the widest sphere that you can impact. This is the place to start.

Take responsibility to provide leadership.

Leadership is more than just good management practices. Leadership is about going somewhere.

Where . . . → Read More: Stop Waiting for Someone Else to Provide Leadership