The Leadership Lesson I Needed Again

When you’re growing and developing your leadership skills, different challenges will come up along the way. And when there is a lesson that you still haven’t learned yet, the challenge will come up again and again until you learn it.

Yesterday I was given the gift of a leadership lesson about communication. To me, the key to success is successful communication. I feel that communication is often overlooked when it comes to factors leading to success but in my mind, without effective two-way communication, that is both active listening and clarity of speech, success is not possible. One of my core values is to listen with love and empathy, and it is something I work on daily.

I have found that many sources of frustration and anger are due to misunderstandings and a lack of communication, whether you’re in a relationship with a significant other, with your children or in a work environment. I got caught up in a work situation where there was an assumption about my behavior (in a negative way) and that I had treated others with disrespect. Instead of being open to my side of the story, I was immediately accused. And, in my haste and frustration, I responded in a defensive way, which did not help the situation. When both sides finally communicated about what had actually transpired, it turned out to be a true misunderstanding with no intent of causing harm by either side.

Gratitude Tip: It can be tempting to react before hearing both sides of a story and base our conclusions about a situation on assumptions. It is far more difficult to wait before reacting and listen to both sides of a situation with love and empathy. However, if we do this, we may be able to avoid frustration and anger by understanding the situation from both sides.


Whenever I am faced with a leadership challenge, I am grateful. I am growing and learning to become a better leader and mentor every day. I have much to learn and lots of room to grow. And I’m grateful for every part of the journey.

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