Six Small Choices that Transform Leadership

Successful leadership depends on what you don’t see – secret decisions that are spread out over time and go nearly unnoticed.

What you see, when you observe successful leaders in action, is the result of small, private, unremarkable choices.


Small decisions determine destiny.

A leader’s trajectory is unnoticed at first. But, the congealing of small, insignificant actions makes leadership. On their own, individual choices often feel insignificant. But, the piling up of insignificant decisions forms you.

Little things make us who we are.

Six small choices:

  1. Stop using others as excuses. You are smaller than the people you hide behind.
  2. Choose vulnerability over wall-building. Barriers keep you in, more than they keep others out. The more you hide the more you lose yourself.
  3. Pick initiative over comfort. Don’t worry about a life of initiative. Just choose action today over action tomorrow.
  4. Select service over ease. Serving others seldom fits neatly into schedules. Ease is the enemy of meaning.
  5. Tip toward gratitude rather than greed. Small souls have small impact. Just keep saying thank you.
  6. Transform complaining, frustration, dissatisfaction, and unhappiness into opportunities to make a difference.

Create small:

Big choices become small when you add the word, “today.” For example, Stop using others as excuses, today. Choose vulnerability over wall-building, today.

Accept dull:

Dull comes before dramatic. Boring choices, that no one sees, make leaders.

The path to remarkable begins unremarkably.

“True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.” Arthur Ashe

What small choices make leaders?