Give respect to the creative abilities of people who love competition and technology and watch as they build a better future.
Trusting those I hire and offering people the chance to grow and learn from new opportunities and working as a time is what I value most in business as in life. The benefits of technology and the worldly experience I've enjoyed have opened my perspective to the possibilities that exist in just about any field, and I hope to be creative in turning that approach to business success. I see this as the way to ensure that I am achieving my bottom line of social responsibility and maximum profitability. It is critical for both of those ideas to work together. My leadership style is to demonstrate this in practice and then to preach positively about what I practice. As with sports, tomorrow is going to be about the power of consistency (Adams 2011).
I was born in Canada and moved when I was young to Arizona. It was there that I truly fell in love with nature and, eventually, with being competitive in sports and fitness. I currently work in the construction field, something that I believe I learned to appreciate from working early in life on various home tasks and helping my parents. They too are very hands-on people and have instilled in me the value of being a doer. Being a leader who follows that path is very important to me.
The direction that I am heading now is very likely into the area of sustainable buildings, eco-friendly development and the concept of encouraging people to be competitive in literally saving the planet. I say it this way because I am still open to many possibilities. I have chosen to remain in the field of construction. I'm completing my degree in construction management and expect to be aggressive as early as I can about finding the type of job that keeps me working in the field even while I am modeling what I believe. I appreciate what technology has to offer in finding and using new construction capabilities and I think that we will see an explosion of opportunities to build more earth-friendly projects in the years ahead. I see a clear but challenging path ahead to run in this exciting direction.
DEFINITION OF LEADERSHIP:
I have clearly learned that in an ideal setting I am a transformational and not a transactional leader (Transactional Leader Report 2007). Transactional leaders operate under traditional structures and assume rewarding and punishing people within an organizational model is the best way to get people to work well together. "Transformational leaders raise the bar by appealing to higher ideals and values of followers. In doing so, they may model the values themselves and use charismatic methods to attract people to the values and to the leader" (Transactional 4).
What I mean by this difference is not that I think there is no value in structure and expected outcomes. Just the opposite really; structure is critical to the kind of outcome and career path I'm on (Adams 2007). I know I would not do well as a member of a sports or construction team if this were not the case. Reading the nature of our bodies, minds, souls, etc. is a lot like reading or appreciating the essence of the quality materials nature has to offer when it comes to building sustainable buildings. This is the kind of partnership I want to work toward as I help build a team that is worth staying with.
Like most people who really want to succeed in business, I value some core concepts. Integrity, service above self-interest, tenacity, persistence, and, of course, discipline are my highest personal priorities. But these values can mean different things at different times. Plus they can mean something entirely different to people who are dedicated to working in a competitive and effective workplace team environment.
As such, on top of the values above I also value these competitive expectations. I found these suggestions on a site by Miller (2010) who has his own top five philosophies and values. But within his works he also talked about what I find so important in team success. I too like to surround myself with others who like to succeed. It helps during the practice (or training and building up time of business), and it works to push us the extra distance as the finish line comes in sight. I believe everyone achieves most when they do things together with others. Even when any one individual on the team has been blessed with a superior talent. And part of the reason is quite simply: because everyone has to carry weight at some point to make themselves and the people they count on better. Carrying weight to me is a sign of initiative and initiative is the kind of resource that can sometimes be hard to value properly unless it has a chance to be seen and nurtured.
Miller adds more team-building elements but I enjoyed his work too because it was paired with technology designers, and I found this just as exciting as the fact that Adams paired his technology values with sports!
LEADERSHIP FROM A DOER
Behavior -- People always do better and produce higher quality results when they are doing what they want and need to do. People have to practice, have to be engaged and have to expect persistent teamwork and success from themselves just as they must from others. I said from the beginning that I am a doer more than just a leader in the traditional sense. I think being inspirational to others to allow them to transform themselves means they have to see growth happen.
Humor -- What I don't have I sure hope someone else does in this quality. I think I'm funnier than other people sometimes do, so I'm usually willing to let them carry this weight. When I found Miller's site on the teamwork of technology, I loved this comment: "I want to surround myself with awesome, fun, passionate, productive, talented, self-motivated people committed to each other and the business. You are here because we believe you fit that definition." That's a great promise of success and a good indicator that humor will be part of the outcome.
Time Management -- There seems to be little more these days in construction management than the awareness that time and effectiveness costs money. In the past, speed made money in construction. Today and tomorrow it will be more about doing the job correcting and ensuring that all the pieces of the project work smoothly to avoid waste. This is where the discipline of competitive business comes into play.
Communication -- I like technology mostly because it allows for constant or regular communications and the opportunity to make sure everyone gets a very similar message. We can do it as a team when we are running smoothly, but when things go wrong or when the course changes, then we have to have confidence that we all know the new direction.
Leadership vs. Management -- These two elements are partners and they must always be present. But they don't always have to be the same person. Because I know who I am, I know that my strength is in leadership, I trust that I can find others who make up for me on management abilities. But the leader is there for a purpose too and I trust I am learning to appreciate that by having my hands on the experience.
Motivation -- One of my favorite quotes in the piece I found on transformational leadership is that "Leaders with inspirational motivation challenge followers with high standards, communicate optimism about future goals, and provide meaning…