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Leadership, for Steve Erickson, is a Quality Not a Position

Michelle Golden at Golden Marketing posted an interesting live blog quality leader.jpgyesterday from Steve Erickson's session on Recruiting at Assoc. for Accounting Administration and she shared  Erickson’s notion that leadership is a quality, not a position. What a great thought …. Thanks Michelle.  

Hopefully, this concept does not encourage bigger bucks to those who lack the quality … but nab the position…. Have you noticed how we tend to forget to reward some people who sport the quality of leadership… but who lack the position at work ... that gets the perks. Have you seen that happen…?

Steve also suggested that young people don't see themselves as successful in the accounting field. I find myself wondering about the way math and accounting are taught and practiced. What do you think...?

I am especially intrigued though... by Steve’s reminder to “talk positively about your firm."  Most people would agree with his observation..." We know how word travels fast!” When Robert Wegman created a place workers loved to walk into... they spoke out so positively ... his firm won top positive place to work... for Fortune 100 Companies. In Wegman's stores... I often hear employees talk positively ... and their recent words traveled fast enough to win the firm a top award.... It's not because they were encouraged to speak of positives... but because of great conditions they met daily at work.

It seems to me,  that if we redesigned the way we
teach and practice skills for people who come in at the entry levels… we’d increase young people’s incentives for even more positive talk about their workplace.

Thanks Michelle and Steve, for helping us to lead with quality! By the way... would you say that leadership quality is mostly innate ... or is it learned…?

5 Comments/Trackbacks

Maybe "There Is No Such Thing as Leadership." At least that's the belief of the man I interview here:


I like that he made me rethink some of my ideas and examine definitions.

Wow, Dr. Weber, thanks for the great expansion of my post. Funny that you asked about whether leadership is innate or learned. I just blogged about born versus learned traits a bit yesterday and have been continuing to give a lot of thought to where leadership falls in this. I'm sure there is much written about this (and I've read very little, to be honest) but my sense is that leadership traits can be acquired...I don't know if I'd say "taught" because it seems that the real leaders I know get their "followers" from exhibiting behaviors that have a depth akin to spirituality, awareness, commitment to something greater than themselves--could even be a cause, a value, a goal.

I'm further intrigued by the content linked to within Stephanie's comment and the math/accounting link in yours. I will thoroughly enjoy digesting this new info. Thank you!

What an interesting perspective Stephanie. Thanks! You'd make a great facilitator or leaders -- and I'd love to see a think tank guided by the question, What does it mean to lead well in this era. Why do I see a brilliant book emerging from such a roundtable. Thanks for the inspiration, I'd like to reflect on this even more!

Michelle, you started all this -- and thanks! Your post triggered so many more insights about key ideas that help people to lead -- that it already inspired further posts. It does not surprise me that you already asked about whether leadership is innate or learned....

Could be we are onto something here folks-- I'm also further intrigued by the content linked to within Stephanie's comment and like you, will enjoy digesting these new ideas ,more.

Now there is a job for the "working memory" and it is what keeps a brain alive too! Thanks! Just in from a Rotary meeting I still have an editorial deadline for a business mag I agreed to write an article on the brain for by morning. It's very rare I let deadlines get that close...:-) so here goes...:-) Hope my brain comes through for me! This discussion intrigues me though!

Nice discussion. Thanks. Michelle's mention of spirituality reminded me of a memorable conversation I had recently about leadership with a friend who teaches at a seminary. After talking for a while, I realized that I had to ask her a question as a result of what she was saying. I asked, "Does a person need to have followers in order to be a leader?" She answered that she does not think so. About that same time, I found the quote at the end of this post:


I think it is lovely. What do you think?

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