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Some of you may be leaving the presidency and I hope you will continue to use your hard learned skills and talents to benefit this remarkable organization.
Some of you will be transitioning from member to leader. In some ways leadership is like swimming-- there are a few who are 'naturals' and a few who struggle to be able to do it at all, but the vast majority with a little training, thought, encouragement and experience, can make a reasonable go at it.
I subscribe to several LWV national list serves and a link to a book by Lee Iacocca’s appeared without comment a while ago. (You never know what I will find in my files!) Here is an excerpt from “Where Have All The Leaders Gone?”
A leader has to show CURIOSITY. If you never step outside your comfort zone to hear different ideas, you grow stale.
A leader has to be CREATIVE, go out on a limb, be willing to try something different. You know, think outside the box. Leadership is all about managing change. Things change, and you get creative. You adapt.
A leader has to COMMUNICATE. Communication in all its forms is the way you market your League.
A leader must have COURAGE. A former LWVNYS president called this her "rhino hide".
A leader has to be COMPETENT. That seems obvious, doesn't it? You've got to know what you're doing. If you don’t know ASK! Now that takes COURAGE too!
To be a leader you've got to have CONVICTION—a fire in your belly. You've got to have passion. You've got to really want to get something done.
A leader should have CHARISMA. Charisma is the quality that makes people want to follow you. It's the ability to inspire.