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Dr Lyle Rapacki

Arizona Today 21 Aug 2023 – Leadership Skills


By Lyle J. Rapacki, Ph.D.
Host and Commentator
July the 12th, 2023

We are facing a time of great change and uncertainty in our nation; so much so that the very fabric of our beloved country stands the chance of unraveling. One reason for concern is the lack of true leadership throughout the strata of our country – from local arenas to boardrooms, from the halls of capitals to the halls of education, a vacuum now stands where once the giant leaders of our society kept vigil.

We are experiencing a generation coming of age that was raised on materialism and selfish gain. These folks are positioning themselves at a time in their lives when they will be assuming the mantels of leadership. What follows them (and already evident) is their personal philosophy of leadership. What we may very well be receiving from them is a form of leadership that historically contributes to the unraveling of a society’s fabric.

“Healthy” leaders strive to accomplish a mission, and in doing so recognize that selfish and personal agendas are a poison to the mission – unless that mission is to perpetuate the leader. Healthy leaders develop a vision with an eye on a mission that brings others into that mission, and moves them to share in the vision. By working toward a mutual vision, the leader has invited the followers to be partakers in the fruits of the labor. Historically, and in every society, there are leaders and then there are followers. This is a fact and reality of human nature. A follower wants to know they can trust the leader, believe in his goals and values, and be a part of a mission that makes a genuine positive difference.

Peter Drucker, leadership observer and writer taught, “the foundation of effective leadership is thinking through the mission, defining and establishing it clearly and visibly. What distinguishes a true leader from a manager in a leadership role are his goals. Whether the compromise he makes with the constraints of reality are compatible with his mission and goals or lead away from them, this will help determine an effective leader. Whether he holds fast to a few basic standards (exemplifying them in his own conduct), or whether ‘standards’ for him are what he can get away with. This helps determine whether the leader has true followers or mere hypocritical time servers waiting for their own slice of the pie.”

People are desperately looking to follow a leader with principles. They want to again believe in the leader who makes personal integrity a product of his vision. When a person in a leadership role no longer thinks of what’s best for the greater good, what’s best for the workers and those for whom they work, then commitment breaks down, and people consider only what’s in their personal interest, no longer the best interest of the organization or the customer, or in the matter of elected service, the best interest of the citizens whom the elected official represents – even those who did not vote for the elected official.

We are at a pivotal point in our nation. We need leaders with whom we feel confident that they care about their vision and goals, but those visions and goals include WE THE PEOPLE and our welfare.

I have been taught what I do matters less than who I am as a person. How I do things matters as much as for whom I do them. I think our nation is ready for leaders who are genuine. I think we are ready for leaders who are not afraid of being real and vulnerable, who we can trust, who align themselves with truth and pay the price of living lives of integrity. I think we are ready for leaders willing to build an authentic environment of grace from which followers can succeed – even when they mess up.

Lyle J. Rapacki, Ph.D.
Host and Commentator

Post Office Box 171
Skull Valley, Arizona 86338
Website: arizona2day.com
Email: arizona2day@gmail.com

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