What you declare will go a long way to determining who you will become.
Many leaders have values, most have opinions, and some even have convictions.
But declarations are different. A leadership declaration is a personal statement of resolve that definitively underscores a leader’s core “DNA”.
When I was in my early 20’s and just embarking on my leadership journey, I made several such “declarations”.
More than 30 years later I can still recite these declarations. More importantly, they have continued to serve as something of a directional “guiding light” to my approach to leadership.
Leadership Declaration #1:
I will take responsibility for my own development as a leader
I have had the privilege of having many wise and generous leaders pour into my life. But while I have gratefully received this mentoring, I have always held to the belief that I am personally responsible for my own development.
As I have said many times since, “Learn from as many leaders as possible. But at the end of the day, no one else is responsible for your own growth. That’s your job.”
Leadership Declaration #2:
I will squeeze every ounce of productivity out of every day
Right from the start I purposed to master the use of time and energy. I wanted to extract as much production out of every single minute of every single day as possible.
My mantra has been clear on this; as a leader you must maximize your time and your energy.
Leadership Declaration #3:
When it comes to sheer effort, I will push myself to the limits.
In my younger, less mature days I put it this way; “I will work harder than anybody else.”
Later, with a bit more seasoning, I learned to compete with myself, not with those around me. I have now learned to say, “I will continually strive to exert maximum effort in all I do.”
I have often said, “There will be many reasons some plans don’t work out. Don’t let lack of sustained effort be one of them.”
Well, these are the declarations I made early on that had the greatest impact in my own leadership.
These might not be yours, but let me urge you to take the time to clarify your own leadership declarations.
Because what you declare will go a long way to determining who you become.