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Lessons from the Ranch (Vol. 1)

“How you lead yourself is how you lead others.”

A quiet reflection that emerged as I coated every inch of this decades old wash house with thick “Barn Red” paint this summer. We were in the-middle-of-nowhere in southwest Nebraska. It was closing in on 100 degrees, it was humid, and the sun was unforgiving. I was covered in dirt, paint, sunscreen and bug spray. The urge to procrastinate, quit, or reduce the quality of my work to add even 1% more comfort to the experience was a seductive temptation (that I managed to resist). In the grind of the undesirable there is opportunity to develop and transfer key leadership skills. It equips you to lead others through all kinds of yucky experiences with compassion, depth and confidence…because the skills to grind out farm work in a summer inferno (grit, resilience, focus) are the same skills to activate for any soul-crushing-but-necessary task. And, reflections leaders will need to tap into as the pandemic continues to affect teams in new and unprecedented ways. Bottom line: A good leader is a good participant. How you lead yourself is how you will lead others. 💥 What gritty, unglamorous task are you navigating in your current season? 💥 How can you lean in rather than avoid? 💥 How will being an excellent participant in the present produce excellent leadership now and in the future?

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