Learning From a Different Place – Part 2
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer

Last week I shared how my life changed after receiving the book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. When I started, my goal was to learn enough to fix the problems plaguing my leadership at Selflock Screw Products. It has been a decade since I first read the book, and my focus has shifted from how long will this take to how far can I go.

In a class this morning, we discussed the difference between goals and growth, and why growth is so much more important. I shared my story of transitioning from the mindset of “how long will this take?” to “how far can I go?” I told the class that my goal 10 years ago was to learn how to fix my leadership problems as a company president. Then we looked at how different things would be had I stayed with my goal and the question of “how long will this take?” The realization was frightening. If I hadn’t changed my focus from my close-ended goal to my open-ended growth, the class I was teaching wouldn’t even exist. There wouldn’t be a Transformational Leadership course either. There wouldn’t be a revised version of Supervisory Leadership. No Maxwell Leadership DISC for MACNY member companies. No Live2Lead in October. No 260 Episodes of The Next Page podcast.

The second law in The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership is The Law of Influence, and the subtitle for the chapter reads, “The True Measure of Leadership is Influence – Nothing More, Nothing Less.” Ten years ago, my focus was on the employees at Selflock. How could I influence them in a positive way? How could I help them see and then realize their full potential? Over time my focus shifted to how far can my thoughts on values-based servant leadership spread? Again, not how long will it take, but how far can it spread. If I just look at The Next Page podcast, the answer is tens of thousands of downloads, reaching 36states and 25 countries.

As I look into the next decade of my life, I need to take a new look at this law. How has my understanding shifted? How have I grown? What’s next? I don’t have total clarity on this yet, but I do think I want to leverage the influence of others to grow an even greater group of values-based servant leaders. I want to use my influence and my platforms to give others who share my dreams for better leadership across Central New York, throughout New York State, and beyond a voice.

When I started on my leadership journey, the focus was on growing in success. As I began to implement the 21 Laws, I learned that leadership is never about the leader or the leader’s success. REAL leaders are focused on others, and they strive to live a life of significance. A life that truly matters.

Next week, I’ll be sharing more about the Law of Process. Have a great week!