As we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of The Secret, I thought I’d write about each of the five practices Ken and I outlined in the book. Although the practices were never intended to represent the steps or process of becoming a leader, the first practice is where leadership begins. Great leaders See the Future.
Leadership always begins with a picture of the future. If you’ve read much about leadership, you’ll recognize this as vision. It is the fuel that burns deep within a leader. Vision is the answer to the questions such as what are we trying to achieve? And, what are we trying to become? I’ve written several posts on vision over the last three years. Today, I want to ask you to think about vision a little differently; let’s start with the end in mind…
When you get to the end of your career, or your life, what do you want to have accomplished?
You may know the answer to this question without hesitation. If so, congratulations! I’m guessing you also have a strong sense of the future you’re trying to create. That’s vision – even if it’s in its embryonic stages.
Now, the fun part… As the late Warren Bennis said, “Leaders turn intention into reality and sustain it.”
The starting point is clearly the realization of your “intention.” If you've not yet determined your vision, my encouragement to you is to think long-term. Who knows if any of has eight more hours or 80 more years – however, if you maintain a long view, I believe it will impact your vision and your actions along the way.
Let’s assume you have a good idea of what your vision is – either personally or professionally, or both. If not, that would be a great assignment. If you do have clarity, here’s a question to consider:
What one step can I take in the next 24 hours to move closer to making my vision a reality?
When you identify that next step, you’re not a leader yet. You’re a leader when you take that step. Life is shorter than any of us want to acknowledge. I don’t want to waste a single day of it. Why not invest your life in the pursuit of something – preferably something you choose. That’s what leaders do.[GLS_Shield]
What’s your next step?