If we are truly fortunate there have been people in our lives, particularly at work, who have shared words of wisdom that have been invaluable to us. Recently I decided to write down a few of the things people shared with me that I draw upon frequently. I hope you find them useful too:
Be a shaper not a victim
Don't teach others how to "play helpless"
Remember that when, for whatever reason, you choose not to offer feedback to another person, from that moment on you share the responsibility for nothing changing and you can longer complain when they don't change or improve
When you are leading others you create the tone and standards for behaviors, performance and teamwork
When what you say and what you do contradict each other people quickly focus on what you do and begin to ignore what you say
If you tell people you want candor and honest feedback be prepared to receive it constructively, use it and thank people for it
Have enough self-confidence to surround yourself with great people who are willing to disagree with you
Trust is earned; you have to explain to others how you measure the trustworthiness of another person and ask them how they measure whether or not you have earned their trust
Being a critic is the easiest job in the world; take on the tougher job of coaching, developing and utilizing the talents of others
Achieving excellence can co-exist with kindness, empathy and understanding
It is rarely, if ever, all about you
The willingness to ask for help is a refreshing sign of strength if you've given your best effort up to that point
Leading requires you to draw upon your head, heart, gut and soul
Don't equate education with intelligence or the ability to contribute
Embrace and seek change
If you don't try you'll never know
While it is important to find what you are passionate about, it is equally important to understand what those around you are passionate about
There are no dumb questions; just people who don't learn from the answers
Never burn a bridge; never undermine a colleague; never take another person for granted
When you are frustrated by another person's performance or behavior ask yourself, "what can I do to help them?"
Think about the wisdom people have given to you and think about the wisdom you can share with others.