One of the most enjoyable aspects of my military career was the opportunity to travel the world.
Over the course of my career, my family moved 14 times. Yes, 14 times in 20 years! It was a wonderful experience for my family to explore, learn, and connect with diverse cultures.
While I really enjoyed moving around the world, every move meant a new job with new responsibilities. Every new position gave me the opportunity to grow as a leader. It also meant I had to establish myself in my new organization.
One of my most enjoyable positions was when I assumed my first company command. While I had served in several leadership positions prior to assuming a company command, it was important for me to establish my credibility as a leader. Why? Because not only was I the first female commander but I also followed a very popular leader.
After being selected for the position, I found myself wondering how would I establish myself as the leader? Well, as I put my vision together, I thought about my conversations with one of my mentors. During our time together, we would discuss how she established herself as leader. She shared her struggles, mistakes and success.
During one of our meetings, I asked what were the keys to her success? She told me it was critical to confirm my credibility as the leader beginning the first day on the job. Of course, I asked her how? Over the next several conversations, she shared her lessons learned over 20 years of leadership.
Well, I assumed command of Alpha Company and it was a wonderful experience. Following the advice of my mentor, I built trust and established myself as a leader. Our company was recognized numerous time for exceptional performance.
Now, why is it important for you to confirm your credibility? Peter Economy said, “Credibility positions leaders as a highly dependable source of expertise, information, and decision-making.”
Before we can confirm our credibility, we must have a working definition. Merriam-Webster defines credibility as the quality or power of inspiring belief. My favorite definition comes from Brent Gleeson, who confirmed what my mentor told me many years ago. Gleeson wrote, “Credibility is based on a combination of characteristics that you exhibit in your personal and professional life that build trust in your abilities.”
So, how can you confirm your credibility? Gleeson offers us a road map he calls the six C’s:
- Character – Integrity is the foundation of leadership
- Consistency – Be consistent in you action and seek win-win solutions
- Communication – Be positive and clear in your communications
- Caring – Build relationships and take interest in others
- Commitment – Establish a shared vision to guide your organization
- Confidence building – Appreciate and value your team
Remember everyone is watching you.
Are you a credible leader?
Dr. Kim Moore, guiding YOU to lead with confidence!
Dr. Kim Moore
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