Two Year Anniversary of Blog
Two years ago I launched the blog with the express purpose of exploring aspects of inspirational leadership. Nearly 90 postings later my mission is still to inspire leaders in all cultures to inspire others.
So what does it take for you to be an inspirational person? Is it your personality? Are extroverts more inspirational than introverts?
The simple answer is be inspired yourself and know what inspires others.
In the book written with Kristine MacKain, Ph.D “What Inspirational Leaders Do” (Kindle 2008) we explore five basic needs that must be satisfied for people to become fired up in order to commit themselves to a compelling idea or course of action.
The needs we have identified have arisen out of our work in coaching and developing leaders all over the world. Over the last two decades, we often began our first contact with a client by asking, “What inspires you?” The answers to this question were compelling in that they typically reflected a person’s deeply held values or needs. We subsequently analyzed and grouped these needs into five categories that we call The Five Sources of Inspiration.
These sources reflect specific needs that, when met, can release powerful inspirational forces in any person.
The Five Sources of Inspiration
The need to:
1. Make a contribution to benefit individuals or the world-at-large. (Contribution)
2. Work in alignment with one’s highest values. (Character)
3. Engage one’s creative potential, to imagine a better way. (Imagination)
4. Be emotionally engaged with others in deep and genuine ways . (Empathy)
5. Be acknowledged and affirmed for one’s unique talents and strengths, and engage those skills in meeting work challenges. (Expecting the Best)
Once engaged, these needs drive individuals and teams to perform and produce at levels they previously may not have thought possible.
A leader’s first step in inspiring others is to identify which source(s) of inspiration drive a particular individual and then appeal to that source.
In closing, we leave you with the words of Patanjali, an Indian sage and
mystic from 3 B.C., who we think captured the experience of inspiration
beautifully when he said:
When you are inspired by some great purpose,
some extraordinary project,
all your thoughts break their bonds;
Your mind transcends limitations,
Your consciousness expands in every direction,
And you find yourself in a new, great
And wonderful world.
Dormant forces, faculties, and talents
Become alive, and you discover yourself
To be a greater person by far
Than you ever dreamed
Yourself to be.
Do you know your own sources of inspiration?
Do you grasp inspirational sources in others?
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