Hard Work = Success: Leadership lessons from my Dad
Today is `Father’s Day’ and I’m So glad & excited to celebrate this special day & dedicating this post to all the wonderful fathers, uncles, leaders & mentors who are like father figures who have inspired the lives of people out there: be it your own kids, others’ kids, your family, people you’ve mentored, coached, and the world at large to be successful.
Thank you for all that you do. Special Thank you for being you. We appreciate all your support and guidance and often times silent but impactful role you have played in our lives.
Here are a few leadership lessons I learned from my dad and it has immensely helped me to raise the bar in what I do.
Congratulations & Celebrations: Firstly, how many of you recall getting your pocket money from your dad and that extra gift when you got your grades high or getting a bicycle when you passed 5th or 7th grade or your dad bringing sweets/chocolates at home when he gets his pay-cheque or bonus. Yes, all these are small moments of celebration when you put in your hard work and achieve that milestone and if you are able to connect the dots then this is the forgotten element of the many leaders now even to praise the effort and celebrate the win. These appreciation & recognition has helped me to build the bond not only with my team and I was able to bring smile in other departments too. Yes, as a leader we need to make time now to celebrate wins and appreciate people’s effort as its an important element to enjoy the journey to build a strong relationship and not just be focused on your next goal.
Courage & Confidence: I remember those school days homework and I would keep my math homework at the end and would look for my dad’s help in finishing it quickly as he was an expert in the numbers and I would portray as though it is urgent & critical and I’m just looking for the answer. My dad had loads of patience and would never give the answer until we learn. He was very clear and wanted me to learn the process on how to get the answers. He has made us verbally say those tables in the reverse order which was frustrating but in the end, I realize his great questions had helped me gain confidence and also know how to arrive at the required answer. I understand two things when I reflect on this incident, firstly Patience fosters an environment that promotes learning and, secondly Leaders don’t provide answers, instead, they ask great questions to help others to become better & confident. Leadership is all about developing people and equip them with confidence to win in what they do. This will definitely yield you mega wins as you are building great leaders in the system.
Collaborate & Connect: My sisters and cousins joke that Dad is our google baba and we reach him before we go to any search engine for the answer. He had great connections with diverse people inside and outside our community and have also seen him treating everyone with the same respect and that could be from the maid at home or to the ministers or to a small kid. I really wondered how he collaborates & built those connections, and this has helped us in so many ways and just one phone call would sort out all the issues. This taught me that leadership is defined by character and not by any position and it’s a great reminder for me to collaborate not just with the team but with other functions, as well as the people outside the organization, and make that connection respectfully. This gesture will help us to build the brand both in your personal & professional life that we’re all in it together and have that mindset to respect and support each other for growth & success.
Circumspect – There were times where my dad would be so cautious about his spending and vigilant on how he invests & saves his money. Of course, he had no backing and only a government salary and raise 4 kids (3 daughters & 1 son) and not let go of numerous other activities like festivals, relatives, weddings, and many other things happening at home. The ground rule as a leader he would value everything and don’t overpay or spend unnecessarily or waste anything and make things happen. My key learning, as a leader we need to be good stewards of what we have and be sensible to build that credence to create results with whatever the cost or the budget available to you and not be lavish just because you have that authority.
Continuous learning: From childhood to now I see my dad Reading and that begins with the newspaper every day & making his notes of all small things in life and even though his learning was in a regional language, he gained expertise in English language and using computers or smartphone, etc. and his learning continues even from grandchildren. I remember him saying that we must be in touch & absorb as much as required, looking at the world around us to learn & help people around him also to grow. He demonstrated that as a leader he needs to get ready for change & build capability to make a difference. One of the things I learned from my dad was that we all need to focus on change & work towards development. His principles were core to his life, and I believe that the power to make a difference lies within all to grow our own capability. Oh yes, Leaders walk the talk and willing to take responsibility as well as equip people around them through learning & development
These are some of the wisdom shots that sparked me to become one who is more focused on building my own capability, contribute, collaborate, celebrate, connect and learn & I’m sure you have your wisdom from your father or father figures in your life. I would highly recommend you to reflect on those gems and incorporate them to make an impact in your life as I believe these advices are required for us to model the right leadership behavior and these insights are required for our future generations too.
I dedicate this article to the first hero of my life and to all the fathers out there who has stood tall like a big tree to protect us and made a positive difference, Happy Father’s Day!
Would love to hear your views, do feel free to share your thoughts by leaving a comment, and enjoy your Father’s Day 😊