Two of the Origin Smart Marketing Solutionistas just got back from the National Leadership Development Conference (NLDC) at Grand Casino in Hinckley, Minnesota. It was an inspiring, impactful, and highly engaging three days learning about servant leadership. Here are 6 of our top takeaways—three each from Rosalie, Founding Solutionista of Origin Smart Marketing, and Amanda, the Inbound Marketing Solutionista.
Rosalie’s 3 Takeaways from the National Leadership Development Conference
As a leader, what you say matters, but what you model matters more!
Your team, your clients, and your vendors pay much more attention to what you do than what you say. If you’re talking one way but behaving another, it’s the behavior people will remember and emulate. This is also true of your company culture. If you say you stand for being environmentally friendly, for example, but you don’t have a sustainability plan or recycling bins, your actions aren’t authentic. It’s the behavior or action that makes the true difference and defines you as a leader.
The devil is in the (small) details!
Having an overarching vision for where your company is headed is a great guide and important in achieving your goals. But does everyone’s daily actions align with it? If not, how are you ever going to achieve your vision? Make sure your vision is clear to your team, and that everyone is working towards that vision. If you need to realign your vision, make sure you get buy in from your team to ensure your changes will be successful and you achieve your goals.
True listening and empathy includes your customers, your team, and most importantly, yourself!
As a business, the goal is to deliver quality products and services on time and for a fair value. In doing so, it’s important to stay agile and sensitive to the wellbeing of our team and ourselves. If a project isn’t progressing as needed or a team member is underperforming, confront the situation with empathy. As presenter Vicki Clark said, “no one—including you!—came to work today to wreck the company.” Discuss any situation honestly and work together to uncover where things went awry and find a solution. Your team, your customers, and you yourself matter. Let your actions reflect that!
Amanda’s 3 Takeaways from the National Leadership Development Conference
Embrace the gift of willingness!
Many of us are talented leaders and professionals, so talented in fact that others always seem to think we’re the perfect person for their next team, project, or leadership position. This can make us all feel a little burned out and reluctant to say “yes.” But I love the idea of the gift of being willing to take on a new venture, a concept Dirk Whitebreast spoke about in his breakout session. There’s a reason people think you’re a good fit—honor that by being openminded!
Work on just one quarter turn: a change that’s easy to make, and thus easy to make stick!
Tim Furlong’s concept of quarter turns really resonated with me. If you’re like me, you have a long wish list of things you think could take your business to the next level. But it’s not realistic to think you can execute them all with consistency and excellence. Instead, choose one—the simplest, easiest one. It will only change your business a quarter turn, but then you pick another, then another. Soon, you’re facing in a new, successful direction.
Remember whose shoulders you stand on!
Taking ownership of your success means honoring the people who have helped you make it happen (here’s looking at you, Rosalie!). How do you thank your mentors, clients, colleagues, and personal support team?
There’s so much else we can share about our transformative experience at NLDC—thank you to Bob Schlichte, Grand Casino Hinckley, and the Mille Lacs Band of Ojibwe for hosting the conference. Be on the lookout for more on servant leadership and a topic that we think everyone can relate to: burnout.