As a leader, I have the opportunity to speak with young leaders every day. Listening to them share their dreams of success reminds me of my days as a young leader. My focus was on doing a great job so I would be promoted.
Like so many young leaders, my definition of success was defined by my title and salary. While I wanted to make a difference, I believed I needed to be in a senior leadership position to effect significant change.
When I engage in conversation with young leaders, they always ask me how they can get to where I am today. So, of course, I share my story of hard work with them, combined with overcoming numerous challenges.
During our conversation, I ask them to define success. Their responses vary, but two themes, position, and salary, always come up during their response. In general, their focus is over the next 20 to 30 years to achieve their idea of success.
When they finish, I ask my favorite follow-up question, “what does success look like when you have achieved the title, position, house, and bank account?” My follow-up question normally stops the conversation. Then, after a long pause, someone typically will respond they will have the resources to help other people.
Based on their response, I shift the conversation to the difference between success and significance. My goal is to challenge their thinking. I want to move them beyond the pursuit of the trappings of modern-day success. Significance, not success, is the goal we should strive for every day.
Why significance? Because living a life of significance not only allows us to achieve our goals but to add value to others. Legendary motivational speaker Zig Ziglar said, “When you help people get what they want, they will help you get what you want.”
Can you live a life of significance? Absolutely! How? Follow the advice of Coach John Wooden, who said, “Make every day your masterpiece.”
“Choose to live a life of significance by moving away from a self-centered approach and put others first.”– Dr. Kim Moore
To assist you on your journey, you can enact the same five practices John Maxwell does every day to live a life of significance. They are:
- Value people every day by believing in people
- Think ahead about ways to add value to people every day
- Every day look for ways to add value to people
- Do things that add value to people every day
- Encourage others to add value to people every day
You must be intentional every day to find opportunities to add value to others. Remember, you have a choice to add or subtract from others. Every day find opportunities to add value to others!
Are you living a life of significance?
How do you make your leadership count? You grow with intention. CLICK HERE to hear world-class leaders, grow your leadership, and transform your life!