Monday, February 7, 2011

The 360 Degree Leader

I have never enjoyed reading. I didn't grow up with it like many kids do and as I have gotten older I have found that sitting and reading just has never been something I really enjoy. Well, that is unless the book has some helpful hints or ideas about how to improve myself as a person or a professional.

I started this blog to begin to write and after I finished my PhD I found a lot of topics to write about. I haven't had to do the kind of research and reading I did during my PhD and it wasn't until a few weeks ago when I felt like I needed to learn about leadership more that I began to read again.

I am reading a book by John C. Maxwell called The 360 degree Leader. It is about how to be a leader no matter what your status or rank is in life. Half way into the book I am realizing that my dreams and passions for moving up are not as accurate as I would have hoped. In fact I don't know how much higher I want to go on the professional ladder as I don't believe I have fulfilled my abilities at my current level.

It is interesting reading this book and seeing myself in a whole different light. Not as someone who has to bang her head against a wall when things don't seem to go right, but someone who can see below, above and around and have a very large impact.

I always thought that if I was the boss I would be so much happier as my vision and ideas would be the future. I thought that I would have more freedom to do what I wanted and when I wanted. Through reading this book I have realized that with responsibility there is less freedom and less time to do what you want. You have so much riding on your ideas and vision that you have to work twice as hard to make them a reality.

Leadership isn't about a title, it is about dedication to the vision that is set no matter what your rank is. I guess it all comes down to attitude and understanding that you can have a major impact to the world but being 'the middle man'. It's kind of nice to know that you have such ability and it doesn't come from a title.

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