Making Others Better: How Leaders Change The Game For All

    “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.” – John Quincy Adams.

I’m sure most of us have seen or even used this quote in the past. When leaders speak of making others better it seems rather cliche at times, we tend to shrug it off as a platitude and toss it aside.  We forget about how much a leader, one who is decisive, caring and even keeled can mean to people. Leaders come in many forms in our lives. When most think of leaders, they think of the “star” of the team, the head of the company. However, the most influential leaders can be those who blend in with the team  We need to keep in mind that leadership is not reserved to a few but to many.  Leaders can be those who are in the background, leading with their actions. There is no role too small to be a leader. It is those leaders who make us better without us knowing it. It’s the actions that make us change our own game.

We know that great leaders put others out front and allow them to lead. Great leaders care as much but developing more leaders as they do about their own success. These leaders allow their influence to be temper with teaching not preaching their message. They take the time to help and mentor their teams, employees and others to make them more confident, more capable and more fulfilled. A leader is one who inspires us to dig deep within ourselves, one who doesn’t make themselves the lead in the story, rather, they highlight those around them.

On the flip side, there are leaders who can be less than stellar who inspire us as well. Leaders who are more about ME than WE. I’m sure we can all relate personal experiences where we’ve worked for leaders who are better at creating negativity and discord versus those that create a nurturing and safe environment where we can be all we can. However, even in those moments, there is a lesson to be had from those who are self-centered and focused on their own goals.  We may not know it at the time, but these leaders may provide us with the most important lessons. We see from their lack of leadership a template of how not to lead. In these moments, they are making us better by the sheer fact that their leadership is inspiring us to change the way we lead others to be their best.

 

 

Jennifer Olney
Over the course of my career, I have been sought after by numerous organizations to bring my talents in the arenas of sales, marketing and business development. As the Founder and Director of Business BEALEADER, I bring my experience to the table to expand the knowledge base for those seeking to find their own leader within. In 2011, I created BEALEADER to be a platform for individuals to share their expertise and leadership to make others better by being a resource of business, career and marketing solutions for those who are just starting out or maybe have a “few” years under their belt and need keep their skills fresh. In addition to the BEALEADER platform, I have developed the business units BEALEADER Business Services, which provides marketing, business development and human resource management services and BEALEADER Executive Coaching Services, which provides one on one and group coaching services to executives and individuals. These business units expand our ability and brand to make others better as we reach out to our audience with these unique product offerings. In 2014, I was named to the Inc.com list of Top 101 Leadership Speakers and I have written for several publications such as Yahoo! Small Business, Business 2 Community and others. I have also co-hosted several podcasts and in 2015 will be hosting the BEALEADER podcast for our audience as well.
Jennifer Olney
Jennifer Olney
Jennifer Olney

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22 Comments

  • Nice piece. I bet a lot of people don’t know how many ways there are to lead. Good reminder to blend in with a team instead of being the bossy one always in front.

  • May 6, 2013

    Jen Olney

    Soulati | B2B Social Media Marketing Thanks, Jayme. I believe most folks feel the “leader” is the one who holds the highest position when in reality leaders can be those unsung heroes in the trenches. Leadership happens in small ways that may not be visible to all. Thanks for the comment!

  • May 6, 2013

    AlaskaChickBlog

    I still have NO idea what, where or when…let alone being able to “connect” but I still hope to attend! This sounds absolutely perfect. 
    What a huge topic, actually. Since I met #bealeader and began what I consider my fine-tuning in true leadership “training” (maybe counseling?? LOL!), our entire training program shifted. As each new issue is brought to attention, through the incredible posts offered by the community or the discussions that come from each and as I learn so much, gain so much insight into what the real issues actually may be or ARE… the Team is brought along with me. This has been an on-going discussion for over a week. 
    Either way, I will be thinking of you all on Thursday!

  • May 7, 2013

    AlliPolin

    You raise some great points, Jen many of which I strongly agree with – especially learning from leaders that are less than inspirational.  When I worked for them, I may not have been happy but the experience of working with them had a significant impact on my own leadership values.  Also, I think that when I worked for some of those leaders, it actually forced me to step up and take responsibility for my work and advocating for my needs, ideas and rally for team success.  When the leader is failing, others can rise to fill the gap.  Leadership happens in a moment of choice to play bigger and lead, not by virtue of title or formal position.  
    I’m sorry I can’t make the blog chat!  Will clearly be a good one!

  • May 7, 2013

    Jen Olney

    AlaskaChickBlog We’ll be thinking of you, Amber-Lee.  I’m so happy that the posts, the knowledge is making a difference for you and your team. It is a blessing to have you in #bealeader each day. Wishing you all the best this week!

  • May 7, 2013

    Jen Olney

    AlliPolin Thanks for commenting, Alli.  I appreciate you taking the time to share here before the chat on Thursday. The best lessons are from those who are not stellar. We pick up what not to do. In the thick of the moment it may seem very harsh but in the end the lessons we receive are invaluable. I know my own experience as well that I’ve had leaders who made me better because they lacked the integrity and honesty to lead. However, on the flip side, there have been leaders in my life that were amazing yet they didn’t have the position or title that one would assume. The unsung leader is very much under appreciated.

  • May 8, 2013

    Angela Goodeve

    What I have learned from those that have not been a great leader is that we need to see the person first, and look at it from their perspective, have compassion, and recognize them individually for all of their contributions.  We also need to be flexible and recognize that we are all unique in our circumstances, our needs, and our talents and allow others to shine in their own way.

  • May 8, 2013

    Jen Olney

    Angela Goodeve Excellent point. We may never know another unless we walk in their shoes and even then we do not know their real intentions. If we take less time to judge and more time to understand we are better for the experience.

  • May 9, 2013

    CASUDI

    Jen, you point out the Leader where you learn “How not to lead” from. What about the CEO/ startup founder I might mentor who needs some fast lessons in leadership. What is the best way to get get this across, especially if leadership is not in his/her DNA, and of course the startup space is fast and furious? Anyone have some experience in this and/or any good tips and pointers?

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    CASUDI The first lesson should be to have a foundation of principles, ones that cannot be shifted with the tides of change. Any leader should have a moral compass that is set within. There are many leaders I’ve personally had whose ability to not waiver to the change or ego inspired my own leadership

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    I want to welcome everyone to our live chat – this is our 2nd blogchat for #bealeader and allows for each participant to ask questions, comments on the topic of the blog today “Making Others Better”

  • May 9, 2013

    CASUDI

    Jen Olney Foundation of leadership principals is something often not addressed in a very early start up founded by a group of visionaries! The startup team and founders are more often focused on bootstrapping, fundraising and doing the customer & product development. The issue is how to get the leadership focus on the startup team radar early on, so the inevitable crisis that will happen down the road can be eliminated hopefully?

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    CASUDI It should be. Many startups fail due to lack of leadership and poor vision from the outset. The focus on the tactics and strategy will be doomed to fail if the leadership is not in place. I’ve seen many startups fail to put in place management/leadership teams with the proper foundation to make it a success. If the startup is only concerned with the product, tactics, sales and lack the ability to lead, there is really no hope for their success. I’m reminded of a start up in Silicon Valley that it’s “CEO” didn’t want the job once it went pass the planning stage and that lead to a breakdown of the partnership and VC’s participation

  • May 9, 2013

    NickGuidryHR

    Greetings everyone! This is NickGuidryHR

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    @NickGuidryHR Welcome, Nick. Great to have you here today.

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    Most point to leaders with the ones with titles, when in fact there are leaders that make us better by their presence on the team. Leaders are not always the ones with the title, there is no job too small to be a leader and I think we forget that when we promote the topic of “leaders”

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    I’m reminded of hockey team analogy, each member has a leadership role – they each have a specific task to perform and within their work they are making others better by their contributions and work ethic.

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    Nick, What do you believe makes a leaders?

  • May 9, 2013

    CASUDI

    Jen Olney Good points: getting the leadership mindset in early, building that start up team early and if the founders don’t fit the bill having them contribute where they contribute best or sit on the sidelines watching and hoping to reap the rewards from their startup equity. It’s a hard lesson to learn for some visionaries, to have the idea and not be part of the process.

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    CASUDI It is a very hard lesson for many. So many want to take the “CEO” role yet that isn’t their true self. Everyone can make a contribution in their own way and it doesn’t have to be at the top of food chain so to speak

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    We are going to be wrapping up our chat in the next few minutes at 3:30pmET If you have comments, add them after the live chat is over and we will respond.

  • May 9, 2013

    Jen Olney

    Thanks for your questions and for taking part in our chat today.