Great Leaders Consistently Work on Their Character

Never does a day go by that I don’t think about working on my character.

The truth is, I think about my character even more than I do my conduct. Why? Because, through the years, I have discovered that my character always determines conduct.

Whether you call it character and conduct, or as I like to say, integrity and influence, if you want to change the things you do, look in the mirror and start with who you are.


As a kid, like many of you, whenever it was report card time, my parents would always ask the same question first. “What is your conduct grade?” Never did they ask, “How did you do in math?” Never, “Did you bring up your science grade?”

It was always, “Let me see your conduct grade.”

The reason? They knew my conduct was a reflection of my character.

So how is your conduct grade these days?

The answer to that question is not simply a reflection of what you do. It is an indicator of who you are.

Why not start with the one in the mirror and work on your character today? I know I plan to.

Leadership Begins at Home,


What happens when leaders focus more on conduct than they do character?

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Is it Time for You to Pick a Fight?

Are you facing a challenge? If so, let the words of author Jon Gordon encourage you to stay the course and keep battling.

“Always remember that our greatest battle comes before our greatest victory.” – Jon Gordon

Leaders, by nature, are born for a fight. Unfortunately after we’ve been beaten and bloodied a few times we have a tendency to shy away and avoid conflict.

As you approach your work today, identify something worth fighting for and go after it. Your team needs you to be the first one to roll up your sleeves and stand for truth.

Never forget, people always watch the leader.

You were born to fight great battles. Your team needs you to keep swinging. Please don’t give up. You’re greatest victory might just be around the corner.

Leadership Begins at Home,


Is there a place in your leadership where you have backed away from a battle?

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Are You Playing with Passion?

“To play a wrong note is insignificant. To play without passion is inexcusable.”

Those words spoken by Beethoven are a challenge to leaders. So many I know are simply going through the motions, punching a clock, longing for a day when they can be free from the monotony of their work. Sound familiar?


Clearly you are talented or you wouldn’t be in a leadership role. The question is, are you in the right role?

When I was a kid I actually spent a few months taking piano lessons. If it weren’t for all the practice I might have been good. Unfortunately according to Beethoven I lacked the most important thing … passion. There is a difference in liking music and having the passion to be a musician.

It all fell apart for me when my first piano recital coincided with a baseball all-star game. Thanks to my dad’s help (he was my coach), we talked my mom into allowing me to skip the recital. My piano career ended that night, but I did strike out a few guys and got a couple of hits. Thankfully, I followed my passion.

How we spend our time is a choice. Make the decision to do what you love and you will not only have more fun, but your life will soon become music to those you lead.

Leadership Begins at Home,


Why do you think so many people choose comfort over courage?

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Do You Need to Do Something Different?

A while back I ran across this quote from the former CEO of Campbell’s Soup, Doug Conant.

“You can’t talk your way out of something you behaved your way into. You have to behave your way out of it.”

Are there places in your life where you have failed to get the results you once intended to? If so, excuses won’t change things. Neither will intentions.

Remember, You have to behave your way out of something you behaved your way into.

Leadership Begins at Home,


What is one thing you need to change before the end of the year?

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