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How Leaders Walk the Talk

By Doug Sterbenz I have been in corporate business for nearly 30 years and I can’t image a more rewarding career. But recently I was tapped on the shoulder by that little voice that’s inside us all. Mine said, “It’s time to go.”

On a very personal note, I can tell you that leaving was really hard. I love that company, and I love that business—what we do and what we mean to the communities we serve. I also know there is a time to tap others on the shoulder and let them answer the call to leadership.

I’ve always said that if you’re honest with yourself, you’ll know when it’s time to go.  You’ll know when it’s time for new leaders who are ready to step up, time for new energy and new ideas. Retiring was my decision, but time itself also had a vote.

Packing Up

I cleaned out my corner office this week. I still don’t think that people are motivated to work harder hoping to be rewarded with the corner office or any other status symbol, but my office must have been a nice office, because others wanted it. I needed to move my stuff out so the next person could move his or her stuff in.

That’s when I had a decision to make. 

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Sticky Messages

I’ve told many people my personal method to keep focused on key leadership thoughts and actions. 

In my office, I keep little notes taped to my side of the desk that only I can see. If you come over to my side of the desk, you can see and read those little notes. They probably wouldn’t mean much to you, but they mean the world to me.

Those little notes contain the best leadership thoughts I could find.  Those notes are my reminders; they help me practice what I preach. It is just my way to stay focused, and walk the talk of leadership every day.

While I was packing up, I thought about leaving those notes for the next person, but ultimately, I decided to pack them up with the rest of my stuff, because even though I have retired from my job, I still need those leadership reminders. I realized that leaders never retire from walking the talk of leadership.

Walk Your TalkScreen Shot 2015-03-03 at 9.50.19 AM

You see, leadership is not a job.  Leadership is not the corner office, your title or your position.  No, leadership is much more than a job. Leadership is who you are.

Are you a leader? Are you walking your talk of leadership? We all need reminders.


DSC_6850(2)Doug Sterbenz is a corporate executive, national speaker, author and a leadership coach for individuals and organizational seeking to develop leaders.

Doug can be reached at Doug@PresentToWinLeaders.com www.PresentToWinLeaders.com

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