Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

Learning from the Best
June 7, 2007

I met with Pat McInnis, my mentor, for the first time this week. I was very nervous for some reason. I was in for a 2 hour, one on one conversation, with the President of Quicken Loans, who has an unbelievable presence if I might add. The first few minutes were brutal. I’m comfortable with meeting people at work and such, but when it comes to the formal introduction with a handshake to the “head honchos” of the companies, I kinda freeze.

But once we began talking, I quickly warmed up. He’s not so intimidating after all I realized. I also realized why I had been matched with him. As I explained to him my weaknesses and areas in which I’d like to improve, Pat said he understood and once went through the exact same thing. Though, I didn’t believe that he was once as fearful of public speaking and presenting as was I, I listened intently. It wasn’t until he began giving detailed examples of what he went through until I believed him. He explained why our minds blank and what I can do to help prevent it. He gave me some other suggestions as well and promised to help me improve my presentation skills.

I am very excited for our future meetings. I know he will challenge me and give me that same push that he gave himself. I am looking forward to our future meetings.


8 Core Leadership Competencies
January 29, 2007

8 Core Leadership Competencies  

Vision – The act or power of anticipating that which will or may come to be.  A vivid, imaginative conception or anticipation.    I believe I have good vision.  I try to see opportunities that others miss.  Also, my actions demonstrate my passion for my personal vision.  I also maintain a clear focus.   Presence – The ability to project a sense of ease, poise, or self assurance, especially the quality or manner or a person’s bearing before an audience. I need to work on my Presence.  In this category, my weaknesses would be maintaining a confident demeanor and exhibiting patience.  Although I somewhat hold both, I could definitely improve in both areas.  My strengths would be displaying humor and compassion through interaction and maintaining confidentiality in order to establish trust.   

Adaptability – The ability to adjust oneself readily to a different condition.  I have a lot of flexibility and I am exceptionally good with managing change.  I actually enjoy change and quickly adapt to it.  MY flaw, though, would be the way I sometimes portray great amounts of change.  I often carry a very negative demeanor in times of great stress and change.  I need to learn to complain much less and portray a more optimistic attitude. Critical Thinking – A plan, method, or series or maneuvers or strategy for obtaining a specific goal or result. I am very good about not reacting to a stressful or upsetting situation in an emotional state.  I deal with problems and changes very well and calmly.  I am good at mediation, problem solving, innovation, and knowledge sharing.  I do need to work on my decision making, though.  I often spend far too much time with my decision making.  I need to remember that time is of utter importance.   

Living the Culture I need to develop and more clearly define my culture.  Teams and people are extremely important.  If you have a good team, the opportunities and success will be endless.   Team Development –   To allow and foster the growth of others to develop by education, demonstration, empowerment, and support. I motivate others quite well the majority of the time.  I tend to assemble very productive teams.  I develop very effective training using techniques that applies to all learning styles.  I also build positive relationships with team members.  

Personal Development –   A process in which someone passes by degrees to a more advanced or mature stage.    I always seek feedback, but I’m not the best with it.  I take compliments very poorly and I take constructive criticism even worse.  I need to learn to accept feedback in a positive manner.  My balance between work and personal life is also quite poor.  I need to set aside some “me time.”  One strength is that I always seek to improve myself. Effective Communication – The imparting or interchange of thoughts, opinions, or information by speech writings or signs.    My presentation skills are lacking.  I need to speak more clearly, do so in an engaging way, and generate more confidence when doing so.  I also need to become more proactive about communication by responding in a timely manner.  This is a major flaw of mine.  I should also work on writing in a variety of different ways and settings.