Positive Quote: “Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.” Sheryl Sandberg
This quote spoke to me this morning. Looking back, when I was a younger adult and into my early 30’s I really didn’t focus much on impact and absence. I had a career I enjoyed and work that stimulated me. In hindsight, I was too focused on myself. I did not open myself up to opportunities or make opportunities.
As I aged and had various life experiences, this thought process began to change. In my late 30’s I started asking myself, am I giving more than I am receiving, if I left tomorrow and moved away, would I be remembered? These can be harsh questions. If you turn your focus onto lasting impact the way you work and lead changes.
I left my prior position to move to another state about 5 years ago. I still keep in touch with people from my old company. Based on my conversations with people, I do believe I left an impact. I smile when I talk to someone who I used to work with or who worked for me and hear that they earned a promotion or that they were learning a new skill. The fact that they would share the news with me, that is priceless.
I’ve been at the bank for 4 years and 7 months. This year will be my 5th anniversary, in late, late December. I am hopeful that I am making an impact.
Some of the precepts I try to live by are:
- If someone has the courage to reach out to you and ask you to be their mentor, don’t immediately say no, find out what they are looking for and if you can help them, say yes. If it is not your strength, reach out to one of your contacts and put them in touch with them. Sometimes reaching out to someone is hard and as leaders, we should do what we can to help and if not us, help them connect with someone else.
- If someone comes by my office to talk, I will either
- stop what I am doing and focus on them, letting them know if I only have x amount of time or talk about what they came to see me about
- let them know I am in the middle of something and if not urgent would love to schedule some time to discuss what they would like to talk about
- ask them to give me 2-3 minutes to finish up what I was working on and then I can be all ears
I will also have paper and pen (pencil) handy in case I need to jot something down. In my experience, even short conversations of 2-3 minutes and you taking the time to listen and talk can be meaningful.
- Find an organization or cause that you believe in and help others. This can be as simple as donating household items or clothing to a non-profit organization or more of a time commitment by volunteering your time in other capacities. When I am volunteering, the focus is never on me, it is about the cause. I also tend to get ideas for work related things when my brain is on another topic and may get an aha moment or a hmmm, what if I could do this or how would this work. I believe our brains need a rest from complex tasks and the rest can lead to new ideas and insights. Also, meeting people from different backgrounds and experiences can be fun and you could make friends that you might have been able to meet otherwise.
- I read, I love to read, my goal is to read at least 2 books a month on topics I want to build up or on topics I am interested in and want to learn more about. I often come across authors who draw me in that afterwards I research other books they have written and add them to my list for future reading.
As you can tell, this quote has my mind going into many different areas. I believe it applies to both work and personal life.
What do you think of this quote?
Have a great day!