A “BIG” high-five to all the Mothers out there. Without your love, guidance and dedication most of us would not be here. I hope everyone got the chance to be with their Mom or at least talk with her on her special day. I’m one of the lucky ones because I got to spend Mothers Day with my Mom. Having my four brothers and sister there was a bonus. It’s been more than 50 years since all of us where together on Mothers Day. Growing up in the 50’s and 60’s was an interesting time. Perhaps not as challenging as it is now – but with eight of us living under the same roof, it had its moments. And through it all my Mother was able to maneuver the ship through the occasional rough sea and stay the course without ending up on the rocks and sinking. Mothers are the ultimate control freaks but they control in a very special way.
Mothers are Teachers: My Mom taught me the difference between right and wrong. To be respectful of others. To be kind. To help those in need. She taught me how to be a man. And more importantly she taught me how to be a parent.
Mothers are Referees: In spite of growing up with four competitive brothers and one sister in the house my Mom still managed to keep the peace. She’d have to intervene once in a while and make us go to neutral corners and take a much deserved time out. My Mom walked quietly but carried a big stick. She just had to give you that certain look and you understood.
Mothers are Guidance Councilors: My Mom was the voice of reason. She guided me with a soft-hand and a gentle push. I could always count on her to be my soft-place to fall so I was never afraid to venture out on my own and take chances.
Thank you Mom. I love you. I am forever in your debt.
Copyright (c) 2014. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Are you looking for a keynote speaker or workshop facilitator who can entertain and inform on a variety of soft-skills topics including: powerful communication strategies, time management and personal effectiveness or how to deal with difficult people and challenging situations better? Visit http://briansmithpld.com
Lance Armstrong, Canadian Senator Mike Duffy and the City of Toronto’s Mayor Rob Ford – you can replace those names with any number of people but, the question remains the same. What where they thinking? Why do good people do dumb ass things? Do they do it because they can? Is it because they think no one is watching or do they do it out of a sense of entitlement? They’ve worked incredibly hard, sacrificed much and worked long hours to further their career – and then in one dumb ass move they’ve thrown it all away. Any credibility they had is gone – wiped out in a heart beat. Some will get back into the public’s good graces but most won’t.
It is better to be defeated on principle then to win on lies. – Arthur Caldwell
The first course I ever taught at Algonquin College’s School of Business was a “Business Ethics” course written by one of my personal hero’s, the late Professor Ron Knowles. He wrote it for first year business students in the College’s Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) program. One of the neat things about the course was that I got to work with first year business students to help them write their own personal code of conduct, their own ethical decision-making model that they could use when faced with an ethical dilemma. (A situation where there is no clear right or wrong answer) When you are confronted with an ethical dilemma what series of questions do you ask yourself to help you make a decision that you can live with?
Before the issue of integrity can even be raised we need principles of behavior – moral convictions about what is and is not appropriate. – Dr. Nathaniel Branden
Ethics is best described as a set of moral principles or values that defines what is considered right and wrong behavior for a person or group. Some people suggest that there is a difference between business and personal ethics. But, to my way of thinking there is just one. You are either ethical or you’re not. How can you behave one way at work and then behave a different way at home and still be true to yourself and what you believe in? The truth of the matter is – if you have to ask whether it is ethical or not – you already know the answer.
A moral compass – your personal code of conduct.
What do you hold to be true? What are your enduring principles? What are you not willing to compromise – no matter the situation or the outcome? What isn’t for sale – no matter the price? If you had to sit down and write your personal code of conduct, what kinds of things would you include on that list? Ethics is a process. It is a continuous effort of studying our own beliefs and conduct and striving to ensure that we, and the institutions we help to shape, live up to standards that are solidly based. What series of questions will you ask yourself to solve your ethical dilemmas? Do you believe – I mean really believe in honesty, integrity and treating others fairly? Is it OK to win at all costs? Does the end result justify the means? I wonder knowing what they know now would Lance, Mike or Rob act any differently? Unfortunately they may not get a second chance.
Copyright (c) 2013. Brian Smith-PLD. Not to be reproduced or copied without permission. Brian is available for speaking engagements, seminars and workshops. Find out what Brian can do for you and your organization by visiting http://briansmithpld.com
The truth of the matter is there are no naturally born leaders – I believe it’s a learned behavior. There is a “Norma Ray” in all of us. We all have the capacity to lead but not everyone sees themselves as leadership material. What key characteristics do you believe a good leader should have? Think about a leader that you admire. What is it about their leadership style that you identified with? What made you decide to follow them? If you decided to follow them – what makes you think that no one would want to follow you? When will you know you’ve made the transition from follower to leader?
You know you’re a leader when:
- When you care more about the success of others then your own.
- When what you say and what you do are congruent – when you are talking the talk and walking the walk.
- When you can give up some control and put your faith and trust in others.
- When you realize you’re not the most important person in the conversation.
- When you never lose sight of your goals and work towards accomplishing them.
- When you live your authentic life. The kind of life you envisioned for yourself.
- When others choose to follow you.
- When you decide honesty, integrity and treating others with respect is non negotiable no matter the consequence.
- When you see a wrong and you work tirelessly to make it right.
- When you care more about what you think of yourself then what others think of you.
- When you decide who you want to follow
- When you decide to do what is right – not what is popular
- When you can agree to disagree and move on.
- When you can let go of the past and not let it interfere with the future.
Henry Kissinger, former USA Secretary of State and National Security Advisor said that the task of a leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been. Wikipedia defines leadership as “a process of social influence in which one person can enlist the aid and support of others in the accomplishment of a common task – somebody who guides and directs others”. We are all leaders waiting for the right opportunity to shine. Waiting for the right opportunity to make a difference in our own way. 🙂
Copyright 2013. Brian Smith. Not to be reproduced without permission. Brian Smith – Author, Communications Expert and Management Consultant is available for keynote speaking, seminars and workshops. Visit http://briansmithpld.com to find out more.