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  • Writer's pictureJonnette Del Mundo

The ABC's of Superlative Leadership

If you want to move from managing to leading, from being a professional to be an inspirer, from being one of the team to being a leader, you need to know the ABC's of Superlative Leadership.

A is for Appreciative Cultures, the result of a leader’s work when the Culture they foster becomes an appreciative value of the company.

B is for rock-solid Belief that your team can move mountains.

C is for Culture, which is how people behave when you’re not looking.

D is for the Drive for Power that makes you want to lead.

E is for Encouragement, like the sun after the rain.

F is for Fun, an indication that the good work is happening.

G is for Growing your people. Like Sir Colin Marshall, head of British Airways, who personally attended every one of his customer care programs, “Putting People First”.

H is for Helicopter vision because you need to see in three time zones: the near, the middle, and the far.

I is for leader Identity, the ability to be comfortable in your shoes.

J is for Joy because leaders rejoice in their blessings as well as the successes of their teams.

K is for Knowing your people, not just by name and number, but by strength and weakness, character and spirit, skills and potential, what makes them sigh, and what makes them soar.

L is for Learning because learning is change, and learning is growth.

M is for Mission which leaders live as well as write. Bill Gates insisted that his staff at Microsoft, Germany, use the familiar “Du” instead of the formal “Sie.”

N is for the Nobel complex, the Belief that everything your people do is worthy of a Nobel prize.

O is for Opportunity. Like Edmund McIlhenny, who returned from the American Civil War to find his sugar plantation and salt works in ruins except for a few hot Mexican peppers that had sown themselves. He used them to produce a sauce that is now known as Tabasco and sold around the world.

P is for Plain-talking because leaders need to be understood.

Q is for Questions such as “What do you need me to do?” “How can I help you work better?” and “What should I be doing?”

R is for Respect, the touchstone of every relationship a leader has.

S is for Symbols, the language of leadership. Like the CEO of a candy factory facing financial ruin, whose first symbolic act was to shorten the tails of the sugar mice.

T is for the Traits of courage and determination, patience and perseverance.

U is for Unleashing what’s there, like 3M, who allow their scientists to spend 15% of their time working on projects that interest them.

V is for Values, the guiding principles of the team, or “the Walkmans of the mind.”

W is for the Way, the Chinese “tao,” the route leaders take and others follow.

X is for Xtraordinary because leaders get ordinary people to do extraordinary things.

Y is for Yes because there is always a plus to be found, even in the worst situation and the most challenging setback.

Z is for Zero tolerance for failure, sub-performance, and giving up.

Learn these simple principles; there are no limits to where you can lead your team.


Check out Mike Acker's new book on Public Speaking: Speak with Confidence, published by WILEY.

A breakthrough to develop confidence in speaking, leadership, and life. A follow-up book to his best-selling book, Speak with No Fear.

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