Modeling the Way with Energy and Enthusiasm
September 12, 2017
By Patricia Marrone Bennett
One of RDA’s core values is that we generate energy and enthusiasm as we encourage others by modeling the way. A core value is something that we are. It is not what we aspire to be. We live our core values in our work with our clients as well as our work and interactions with each other.
We have been generating energy and enthusiasm for change and improvement with many of our clients over the years – with heads of departments, chiefs of police, community members, consumers of services, and others. We have often worked on projects where we have helped our clients, and ourselves, expand our thinking and imagine better ways to approach problems. We realize that without excitement, we will not be able to develop the buy-in needed for changes and improvements.
This core value is related to the important leadership practices that help inspire others to act. One of the basic tenets of the best type of leadership is often referred to as “modeling the way.” As leaders, modeling the way means we proactively show how to change, grow, lead, or improve, rather than waiting for someone else to do it. We use self-reflection to ensure that our own actions illustrate how we want others to act. If we want people to listen, we make sure we listen. If we want people to be curious, we are curious. And if we want to inspire others and help them believe that change is possible, we must generate energy and enthusiasm.
One Small Planet
It is impossible to look back over the events of the past year and not viscerally feel the interconnectedness between ourselves, our families, our communities, and the rest of the world. The struggles of other countries, even other states, that once felt like distant concerns confined to the evening news now take on a different meaning. The pandemic and its economic devastation; the urgent cries for racial justice; the ever-increasing threat of wildfires, hurricanes, and other climate-change-driven disasters: these challenges belong to all of us.
Moving from Crisis to Chronic
Six months into the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are still operating in crisis mode. We are exhausted, and the items we put on the shelf are starting to stack up. It’s time to revisit our triage plans, no matter how planful or ad hoc, and re-evaluate our priorities and resources.