Your active, authentic voice and honored commitment to your true self opens understanding to the world. Understanding frees voice – yours and that of others.
I’m so thankful that my career path has taken me through the fields and forests of management and leadership. I’ve learned things about myself and my fellow human beings that have enriched my life immeasurably. In my early managing years I was like any newbie to management; I was dangerous. I find it sad in our organizational society how readily we throw the ill-equipped into the role.
In those early years I communicated, managed and interacted from my own context. In other words, I treated others based on my current understanding – an understanding focused mostly on my own feelings and therefore extremely limited. While I hate to admit it, in any given situation it was often more about being right than doing what was right. Behavior like that not only exhibited my inability to apply understanding to others, it proved openly that I had little understanding of myself.
I was awakened to this disturbing reality when I became conscious of the distance between my Desire & Intent as a leader and my lack of skill in making it real through my behavior. A substantial part of this awakening occurred during my work creating a personal mission statement. The real beginning of my conscious journey to real leadership was when I focused my growth and development on the skill (art) of listening.
As I learned more and more about listening I began to go beyond just the how and found the real treasure. Listening to another person (or even a collective of persons) is not just about gathering information. Listening from your core into the core of others is the key to the chest of treasure. The greatest of the jewels to be found among the treasure is that of respect. You will find the act of respect difficult, even impossible, if you are still allowing judgment to plague your thoughts – judgment of self and others. A beautiful, strong self-respect will yield a powerful respect for others.
Respect is a friend to be trusted; a friend critical to your safety. From a base of self-respect you respect the individual and thus form a loving respect for the larger experience that is unfolding.