Are You a Transcending Leader?

28 Jun

Recently, I attended a funeral of a young woman and the word that kept coming to mind as people remembered her was, transcend.  When you look at the definition of transcend, you see:

verb (used with object):

1.  to rise above or go beyond; overpass; exceed: to transcend the limits of thought.

2.  to outdo or exceed in excellence, elevation, extent, degree, etc.; surpass; excel.

She had put her illness aside and demonstrated what it meant to go beyond a diagnosis or the limitations of threatening, life-shortening cancerous cells where there was no cure.  As a teenager, she showed wisdom, resilience, and spirit that defined the meaning of transcending limits.  She was a beautiful example of the potential each person has, even when faced with the most horrific of circumstances.

As a leader, you will have to deal with a vast spectrum of circumstances, some that may be devastating.  The ability to transcend situations is essential to strong leadership.  What skills and abilities will help you lead others through trying times?  Let’s look at a few:

  1. Assess situations – identify the problem and the players involved objectively.  In order to create solutions, you need to know what has happened, who’s involved, the stakes, what needs to happen in the short and long terms, and how much time is required of you and others.
  2. Clear your thoughts – put aside judgment, demonstrate openness to all ideas, and refrain from putting limits on yourself and others.  Create an open environment where people can share freely about the circumstances and co-create solutions that go beyond the obvious.
  3. Practice resilience – adapting and bouncing-back from set-backs is fundamental to excellence.  Model an attitude of positivity balanced with realism.  Communicate that you believe in a good outcome and anchor your belief with realistic objectives and actionable plans.

Go beyond the obvious in all situations and be the leader who helps your team to bust their limitations.  Ask yourself what you can do today to help someone on your team reach their potential. Can you help them assess situations more clearly?  Do you need to put judgment aside? What does your attitude communicate?  Transcend the limits to elevate your team to the next level.

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One Response to “Are You a Transcending Leader?”

  1. Geri June 29, 2011 at 5:03 pm #

    nice post, sorry for the loss! Ge

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