Five Leadership Resolutions for 2014


A history of failure prevents you from making New Years resolutions. You fell short last time. Why try again? What’s the point?

One friend said, “The only resolution I’ve kept is the one not to make New Years resolutions. But…

Those who can’t start fresh are doomed to repeat the past.

People who get it right the first time reached too low. Meaningful relationships and noble goals die if you don’t start again.

Those who don’t start again quit.

5 leadership resolutions for 2014:

  1. Resolve to spend 15 minutes a day listening. Refuse to make statements, just explore. After you’ve mastered 15 minutes, up it to 30. Most leaders talk too much.
  2. Spend an hour every week with someone you admire. The people you hang with reflect your future.
  3. Talk about the past in terms of lessons learned. Stop circling the past like a vulture eyeing a carcass. Everyone captivated by the past repeats it. The past is a tool for learning not a target for circling.
  4. Reject isolation; embrace connection. The double trouble of failure is pulling into a shell. Isolation is a symptom of sickness and fear.
  5. Don’t talk about it unless you plan to do something about it.

4 Ways to help someone else begin again:

Leadership is always about others. Real leaders ignite fires. Any idiot can douse flames.

The power to start fresh often comes from another person. Be that person. Someone helped you begin again. What did they do? Do that for someone else.

  1. Go with. Use the first rule of improvisation. Go with your partner not against.
  2. Help them feel understood, respected, and appreciated. People don’t have to be perfect to be supported.
  3. Talk about challenges realistically. Unrealistic optimism is foolish. Truly great stuff is hard.
  4. Fuel confidence by identifying simple, actionable steps forward.

What leadership resolutions do you recommend for 2014?