There many things that contribute to the success of an emerging leader or even a seasoned leader it can become quite a daunting task to remember all of the strategies and techniques; or even apply thought leader concepts. As a writer and a student/teacher of professional development I LOVE taking things that I like and put a leadership spin on it. For example- The Lipstick Chronicles. If you haven’t read it I encourage you to do so. Even if you don’t wear lipstick the information that you glean from the article will help you along your personal and professional journey.
While on vacation in December, enjoying the sun, sip and sand, I started to think about blog topics. Yeah, I know, why right? Well, that’s just how I’m wired. So as I was exploring the beautiful jewelry stores in Aruba I thought, how do jewels relate to leadership? Well, I will tell you, after some research it became quite apparent as to how jewels relate to leadership. I got excited and I hope you will too. More importantly I hope that you will apply these concepts as you develop your organizational culture, increase your influence, and develop the leaders around you.
So let’s go shopping for jewels!
1. Flexible Sapphire
We have all worked in rigid environments; and if we can recall without retraumatizing ourselves, we can remember that those environments were tense. Communication as well as creativity was stifled. The remarkable hardness of sapphires reminds us to be flexible. As leaders, we should strive to be like the rubber band, flexible (when appropriate). Rigidity is about power and control. Rigid environments compromise the organizational culture, it paralyzes the team and it hinders growth. We must practice flexibility in our thoughts, our actions, and our requests. So as beautiful as the sapphire is, let this hard stone be a reminder for you to practice flexibility.
2. Imperfect Ruby
Wait for it…wait for it…Just like rubies we are not perfect! All natural rubies have imperfections in them, including color impurities and inclusions of rutile needles known as “silk”. The ruby reminds us that as leaders we are going to make mistakes, we are going to fail and it’s less about being perfect and more about learning from and embracing the process. A ruby leader feels the sting from the mistake or disappointment but quickly recovers using the color impurities and inclusions as lessons learned and not emotionally binding losses.
3. Emotional Emerald
Most emeralds are highly included, meaning, their toughness (resistance to breakage) is classified as generally poor. Leaders need to use this stone as a reminder to use their emotional intelligence just as much if not more than their IQ. Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to identify, assess, and control the emotions of oneself, of others, and of groups. “Emotional intelligence is still not completely understood, but what we do know is that emotions play a very critical role in the overall quality of our personal and professional lives, more critical even than our actual measure of brain intelligence. While tools and technology can help us to learn and master information, nothing can replace our ability to learn, manage, and master our emotions and the emotions of those around us.” Let’s be emerald about our emotions.
4. Interpersonal Amethyst
The Greek word “amethystos” may be translated as “not drunken”. Amethyst was considered to be a strong antidote against drunkenness. Amethyst should remind us to use our soft skills and to encourage the use of soft skills in our organizations and companies. “Soft skills are personal attributes that enhance an individual’s interactions, job performance and career prospects. Unlike hard skills, which are about a person’s skill set and ability to perform a certain type of task or activity, soft skills are interpersonal and broadly applicable.” I’m reminded of a client who was an amazing engineer but her ability to relate to basic professional interactions caused her to loose opportunities because she “wasn’t a good fit for the team”; smart as a whip but rigid in her social interactions. Leaders must find a balance between social and professional, there is room for both but it can be a tightrope for some. Remember the Amethyst!
5. Authentic Topaz
Pure topaz is colorless and transparent but is usually tinted by impurities; this stone reminds us to be authentic, and genuine. Many organizations do not encourage true authenticity as much as they encourage performance. When people are allowed to thrive in an environment where they can be respected as their true authentic self, then performance will increase.
6. Nurturing Jade.
Nurture relationships like Jade. Jade is a sensitive stone. you must be careful to avoid bumping it to prevent cracks, keep it away from grease and dirt and it must be stored carefully, The care of Jade is just like the care and nurturing of relationships. Leaders should be reminded of the stone Jade when it comes to developing, nurturing and maintaining relationships inside and outside of the organization.
7. Intentional Pearls
I love pearls; I’ll never forget my first pair. Developing leaders for growth is like the formation of a pearl. Natural pearls are nearly 100% calcium carbonate and conchiolin. It is thought that natural pearls form under a set of accidental conditions. An intruder enters the shell, creating an irritation. This secretion process is repeated many times, thus producing a pearl. Becoming a leader is like the formation of a pearl especially when placed in challenging situations.
So here you are your jewels for leadership success. Allow these jewels to guide you and be mindful of them when you are leading others and faced with making decisions. I would love to help you develop your leadership jewel court through our personal and professional growth programs. Let’s connect, follow us @drtaunyaalowe; like us https://www.facebook.com/TheImpactExperience or connect with us on www.linkedin.com/in/drtalowe
Taunya A. Lowe, Ph.D. is the CEO of a human services and leadership development consulting firm located in Lawrenceville, GA. Dr. Lowe is a speaker, trainer, strategist, success coach, professor, entrepreneur; and the Siegel Institute for Ethics, Leadership and Character 2013 Phenomenal Woman. Trained by John Maxwell and his team, she is a skilled change agent with a focus on developing people and organizations. She enjoys combining her photography and writing to motivate, inspire and lead people and organizations toward transformation. Contact Dr. Lowe, by visiting www.drtaunyalowe.com or email her firstname.lastname@example.org or call her office (855) 873-4445.