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Peak Performance & Leadership Author, Speaker & Consultant, ZoneFlow CEO

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Leadership and success are both primarily intra-personal dynamics, yet most of us contextualize them as inter-personal. Your thoughts?

Most people most of the time think of leadership and success both only within the context of "leading other people" or "success because I have this title, which most others don't have" or "success because I have this amount of money, which few other people have" and so on and so on.

I'm finishing a book on leadership and success which considers both as not synonymous, but inexorably interlinked, with one always accompanied by the other and, more importantly, with them being totally intra-personal phenomenons. These phenomenons are often accompanied with the external and inter-personal results people often misconstrue as leadership or success, but they aren't the same.

I'm very interested in other's perspective and thoughts on this subject. Would love to have a robust dialogue. Thanks so much for your input and your time!



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  • Dec 17 2012: Leadership is deigned , usually from the ground up , sanctioned by those who have already attained. Success is a perception interpersonal as well as intrapersonal based on preconceived models both personal as well as social - which may or may not be valid.
    • Dec 19 2012: Doesn't true leadership (not self-proclaimed or group-proclaimed leadership) come from who the supposed leader is, what they do and how they do it?

      For example, society says that the president of the United States is our leader (take any president, not necessarily the current one). BUT, although social norm says this is my "leader," if I disrespect the specific office holder, finding his values, beliefs and actions repugnant and/or destructive, he's not a leader to me in any manner or form.

      I'm really trying to get at the fact that leadership (or a lack of it) begins only within the individual (the would-be leader).

      I've had a number of bosses at Fortune-100 corporate banks that were in high "leadership" positions, YET, few if any followed them. They had absolutely no leadership skills (although they were incredibly bright people and reasonably good managers).

      Thanks for your input Rob. Cheers!
      • Dec 19 2012: Interesting. The model for a leader has changed here in America. Formerly, a community sanctioned model existed. If you performed well, did your duty, rose to occasion, and commanded a following , then, you were elevated as in the example of King David in the Bible. I can think of two instances , eg. , in which this took place - #1. In the matter of Goliath and the recognition and honor that followed ; #2. When he was cast out and hunted down as an enemy of the State - In this matter he had a following of ragtags the numbers of which grew as he travelled along, all of which honored him with the position of leader - which he indeed was as the story goes on to tell. Today, we have a system sanctioned model. A model I see as being inferior - the ravages of which, unfortunately, will take time to tell , but tell it shall. In this model one may pass a grade or subject generally via textbook or lecture. The grade or subject of which may have been earned - rarely- or may have been excelled in claudestine fashion - predominately. Upon achieving , with respect to the systemic model and sanctioned by such, the individual receives their award. This award(diploma,degree,certificate,etc.) provides qualification for , in the context of our discussion, a leadership role. This individual may or may not be a leader , but , simply has passed a criteria for which the system has sanctioned as a qualifier for such. The tradedy, depending on the application, is that the awarded individual may be completely inept. Therefore, when called upon for legitimate duty as a leader , they miserably rise to the task. Their dismal performance may be unrecognized, ignored, or simply excused by the masses and fellow system sanctioned leadership , yet , in the eyes of God and true leaders or those who are wisely capable of detecting such , it will be known and seen.

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