It’s not easy to climb to the top of an organization and it’s even harder to stay on top.
I recently sat down with a group of Presidents and CEOs for a luncheon meeting. It was informal with no hard agenda. The discussion centered on leadership in shifting times. Each of the leaders had weathered significant storms these past few years. Yet, now there seemed to be a renewed sense of energy and optimism among them. They were like veteran generals hungry for a new battle and ready to take on new territory.
As I furiously scribbled notes on all the insights, strategies and business forecasts, one story stood out to me. One CEO began to describe how he had started his business in his garage and from there built himself a multi-million dollar company. His words echoed with authority as he said, “I don’t care who you are. It’s not easy to climb to the top of an organization, and it is even tougher to stay on top.”
My greatest takeaway from our meeting was observing how these CEOs think, feel and act about their business, their life and their leadership. In order to become a powerful individual, I believe it is important to imitate those who are already on top.
I would like to share ten ways you too can think, feel, and act like a CEO.
- Be free to be you – The most effective CEOs are comfortable in their own skin
- See beyond turbulence – No one at the table was chattering about what was lost. They were all enthusiastically focused on their new vision.
- Be a competitor – All of the people at that table liked to win are and were not afraid of competition.
- Listen to good ideas – Everyone was taking notes and welcomed new best practices. They all gleaned good ideas to take home.
- Be a talent finder – People still matter. These leaders were constantly on the lookout for talent, networks, and were leveraging their relationships for success.
- Make no mistake, you have to know what you are talking about – They were knowledgeable about the economy, business trends, political impact, and financial reports.
- Don’t underestimate emotional intelligence – These CEOs understood how their attitude, moods, and emotions affected their company culture. They had strong self-awareness, people skills, and emotional self-management.
- Always be a salesman – The people at that table were all persuasive and had their own genuine style.
- Think big – Not too many of these leaders spoke in terms of survival. It was all about how to thrive. CEOs feed off big ideas.
- Be confident – I did not see timid or weak attitudes. These people exuded a confident presence.
No matter who you are, imitating the world’s most successful individuals will help. You can think, feel and act like a CEO. Let’s go get it. It’s a great day to take on new thoughts, feelings and actions! Welcome to the mind of a CEO.
Photo Credit: www.idemployee.id.tue.nl
I’ll be honest, one of my favorite compliments is when people take note of my energy and passion. It has been a characteristic I try to project when I deliver a leadership presentation and coach one-on-one. But having such energy has been a life struggle of mine. When I was a young man in my early 20’s, I was diagnosed with a blood disorder. For over three years I woke up every day with a low grade temperature and lacking energy. I’d drag through my days. My attitude was good but my immune system was ravaged. This predates the internet so I received all my information about how my life was going to be from a small collection of doctors.
I owe many thanks to my Dad. He and I would go to the Portland Library on Saturdays and study up on rebuilding the immune system. We learned about the importance of everything from nutrition to vitamins to replenishing sleep to emotional stress management, along with faith and positive attitude! I got very serious about all of those and simply refused to believe I couldn’t regain my energy. I had competed in athletics growing up and this battle became a challenge I had to win.
Well, fast forward to today. I’m healthy with no hint of fatigue. I train 4-5 days a week and I eat like an athlete. I strive to get seven hours of sleep and I’m working most days by 5 AM. What I like most about where I am at is how grateful I am for what I have. I am fearfully and wonderfully made, not perfect but I’m sure grateful for what I have!
7 Keys to Building Irresistible Energy
- Cut down or cut out sugar. I think this was the #1 game-changer in turning my health around. The immune system has to work overtime when we consume sugar.
- Train 3-5 times weekly. Like Oprah says, “take choice out of it.” It is about consistency, I like 45 minute trainings!
- Get on a balanced regimen of vitamin supplements including, Multi, C, fish oil, flax oil, and D3. Note: I spread them out over the day.
- Eat plenty of veggies and add color to your plate daily. Also, get to know and love fish!
- Whatever amount of water you consume daily, increase it and watch your focus clarity and energy climb.
- Every morning say, “Good Morning Lord!” rather than “good God it is morning.” Speak energy into your days!
- This one is brand new for me in 2013. Soft music and ten minutes of morning stretching before email and social media.
Note: These are more like 7 reminders that have been effective for me over the years.
Final thought: I know it might sound a bit over the top, but I don’t like to say “I’m tired.” I like to say I’m doing exceptional and feeling great!
Question: What one key can you apply today?
Image Credit: Web MD
When my son, Jayce, was two years old he water skied. Honest. We had those little skies that were connected at the tips with a rubber strip. He had been on the dock watching us ski all day and finally said, “I can do it!” So we humored him. My wife held him in the shallow end by the dock. I pulled the boat out and tossed the line. We thought he’d go a couple of feet then sink. As I pulled away, he hung on tight and kept going. I thought, “Holy Smokes! This two year old has guts! Gutzler!” He proceeded to do about a 100 yard loop and let go right next to the dock, like a pro! His next words were priceless, “I didn’t even fall!”
Jayce is now married and is a S.W.A.T. officer. He is humble and gracious. And he is confident. He has never backed down from a challenge and he has had his share of them like the rest of us.
Seven Ways to Build Confidence:
- Think: Speak and act like a leader! Your confidence will follow.
- Carry your head high and exude confidence, not cockiness. Your personal presence is powerful and sends a signal to you and others of your confidence.
- Stay in your strength zone. Everyone has weaknesses but emphasize your strengths. Do things you excel at!
- Take on new challenges and never back down to pursuing your risk zone. This year, I am going sky diving with an Air Force buddy of mine. What are you going to do?
- Hang out with leaders and confident people.
- Be prepared. In daily assignments, do the extras in order to pre-script your desired outcomes. Preparation breeds confidence.
- Look your best. Confident people look sharp and take pride in personal appearance.
Which one of these seven strategies can you apply in your personal leadership today?
Daily mantra: “I can do it!”