Character: What Is the Impact, and How Do You Improve?

The October Authentic Leadership Dallas lunch meeting will focus your leadership journey. We will meet on October 28, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, at the Renaissance Dallas Richardson Hotel. Please RSVP on our Meetup page; you can find directions and details there. We meet in the restaurant. The Meetup facilitator is Robert Hunt.

Leadership Character by Robert Hunt

Character, or the lack thereof, has a greater effect on your business than you imagine. Things that we often over-look, or consider a lack of professionalism or skills, are actually a weakness in character. A weakness that affects and influences your team, the work they produce and the culture of your company.

People are more likely to be let go from a job because of a lack of character than a lack of skill. Although character can be taught, it is much harder to do adopted than a procedure or skill. (Read “Can Character be Taught?”)

Character can be learned but most leaders do know understand the proper way to teach what it is and how it is modeled. It does no good for a person to tell another person to “have more character.” Character must be defined by the qualities that represent it. Once they are defined, we can then move to understanding the qualities by teaching how they are best displayed.

It is not uncommon to find people who WANT to be a person of character but they do not understand certain qualities that determine character. This is especially true of young adults who may have had poor teaching or poor role models. Some character qualities that can be taught on the job include:

Alertness, Boldness, Decisiveness, Deference, Dependability, Endurance, Enthusiasm, Flexibility, Gratefulness, Humility, Initiative, Loyalty, Orderliness, Patience, Persuasiveness, Responsibility, Self-Control, Thoroughness, Tolerance.

Character List

Imagine how character, if continually taught and recognized, could change people, teams, companies, communities, and the world. Our agenda will focus on the following questions:

  • What character flaws have you seen have the worst effect at your company?
  • Does your company work to address qualities of character they desire from their employees?
  • What character can you improve on today that will make you a better leader?

 Join us for this engaging leadership conversation!

About Robert Hunt

Robert J. HuntRobert Hunt is the Forum Leader and Business Partner for Renaissance Executive Forums Dallas. His role is to find the best members for CEO Peer Groups, then lead each meeting so members become Raving Fans. You can connect with me on LinkedIn,  Google+Twitter, and Facebook.

Are You Ready to Be a Leader Worth Following?

Leadercast 2014 issued a challenge to lead “Beyond You,” and Leadercast also calls on us to be “Leaders Worth Following.” In a recent post entitled The Longing, a call was issued for leaders to raise their hand and be a leader worth following. A video highlighting this call to lead well is below.

This needs to be more than a hand raised. This call needs to be leaders standing up and extending their hands to engage each other in meaningful ways.

A key question may be: Is all this just happy talk at a conference and then we go back to our workplaces and lead in the same ways? It is so easy to do.

As leaders, we need to rise up, define what it means to be a leader worth following, and then lead in that way. We may not get it right every time, but we are trying. In trying, we learn, and we get better. This sets the right leadership example.

So the question stands:  Are your ready to stand up and be a leader worth following? If so, when? If so, in what ways?

Join in because the people we work with deserve it and you have the stuff within to lead in this way. Tap into your best leadership capabilities and be a leader worthy following.



Leadercast Lead Dallas Tomorrow!

Leadercast happens tomorrow with one simple, powerful mission:  To Equip Leaders Worth Following. We are energized to be a host site for this one day event and look forward to learning from the speakers and engaging in conversations with over 150 leaders gathering in Plano, Texas. For those registered at the Leadercast Lead Dallas host site, we look forward to seeing you tomorrow morning at: Chase Oaks, 201 Legacy Drive, Plano, TX 75023. Check-in begins at 7:00 am and the speakers start at 8:00 am.

Authentic Leadership Dallas is a community of leaders who learn and grow through engaging conversations on various leadership topics. We meet monthly, the fourth Tuesday. We will continue the conversations after Leadercast and gain an extra bounce in our leadership steps. You are welcome to join us.

So, on to Leadercast tomorrow, Friday, May 9th. We look forward to engaging our leadership mind and spirit!

Leadercast Lead Dallas




Personal Leadership: Lessons Learned in Tough and Good Times

Turning Downturns into Upturns

Image by VizwerxGroup –

Good times happen just as bad times do. Leaders need to navigate both. As important is what leaders learn from good and bad times. In our monthly leadership conversation, we will share experiences and lessons learned. When we learn from each other, we will have a better footing to do the right things in good times and understand how to lead through tough times.

Join us!

The April Authentic Leadership Dallas lunch meeting will focus on leadership lessons learned from good and bad times. We will meet on April 22, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, at the Renaissance Dallas Richardson Hotel. Please RSVP on our Meetup page; you can find directions and other details there. We meet in the restaurant.

Background Reading

7 Ways Leaders Maintain Their Composure in Difficult Times. Key quote: “The 21st century leader sees adversity through the lens of opportunity.  Rather than panic, a leader with composure takes a step back and begins to connect the dots of opportunity within adverse circumstances.   These types of leaders quickly detect the causes of adversity and solve for them immediately.  They then enable the opportunities previously unseen that could have avoided the adversity to begin with.  Many times crisis results when composure is missing.”

How to Thrive During Tough Times. Key quote: “When leaders push emotional or professional challenges under the rug, those unaddressed feelings plant a seed of self doubt. That leads to low confidence, self-comparison, and diminished faith in your ability to handle future trials — a toxic combination. On the other hand, if those challenges are addressed, leaders begin to flourish. ‘Struggle and leadership are intertwined,’ Snyder says. ‘Challenges create the opportunity for leadership growth.’”

Leadership Lessons for Hard Times. Key quote: “A healthy company enjoys not only strong financials but also a culture and values that bind it together. Much of what our interviewees describe as important is driven by corporate culture—open communication or a focus on a company’s long-term health, for example. Several CEOs chose to highlight how a strong culture had helped them in hard times and how important it is not to sacrifice that culture when a company comes under pressure.”

Activity to Prepare

Draw a line down the middle of a page. Above the line – Think through your past experiences and jot down one or two good experiences and what you learned from them as a leader. In these situations, you could be the leader or team member. Either case will deliver lessons.

Below the line – Think through your past experiences and jot down one or two challenging experiences and what you learned from them as a leader.

Leading and Learning from Good and Bad Times


Our meeting agenda is:

  • Forty-five second introduction: What do you want people to remember about you after the meeting? (10 minutes)
  • Question 1:  In your challenging times, what leadership lesson did you learn? What leadership trait was strengthened? (20 minutes)
  • Question 2:  In you good times, what leadership lesson did you learn? What leadership trait was strengthened? (20 minutes)
  • Wrap-up: Leadercast updates and areas of assistance, May 9th.

If you haven’t registered for Leadercast on May 9th, please consider joining us to energize your leadership skills and spirit!

Special thanks to the great people at Vizwerx Group for providing the feature artwork for this post!

Leadercast: Insights from Select Speakers

Leadercast is fast approaching and we have been watching for recent interviews with the speakers or other articles written about them or by them. We highlight two now:  Desmond Tutu and Simon Sinek.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu: Resilience

Recently, Desmond Tutu was interviewed by Krista Tippett, host of On Being. Highlighted below is a key quote from the interview along with the video from the complete interview.

Desmond Tutu:  “At no point will evil and injustice and oppression and all of the negative things have the last word. And, yes, I mean, there’s no question about the reality of evil, of injustice, of suffering, but at the center of this existence is a heart beating with love. You know, that you and I and all of us are incredible. I mean, we really are remarkable things that we are, as a matter of fact, made for goodness. And it’s not a smart aleck thing to say; it’s just a fact. Because all of us, even when we have degenerated, know that the wrong isn’t what we should be, isn’t what we should be doing. We’re fantastic. I mean, we really are amazing.”

Simon Sinek: Leadership is a choice

Simon SinekSimon Sinek recently spoke at TED 2014. Although there is no video yet, the quote below came from the TED blog in a post entitled “Leadership is about making others feel safe: Simon Sinek at TED2014.”

Simon Sinek:  “The ups and downs of the economy, the uncertainty of the stock market, the new technology that renders your business model obsolete overnight, the competition that is trying to kill you or at a minimum stop your growth and steal your customers—we have no control over these forces. They’re constant and they’re not going away. The only variable are the conditions inside the organization. That’s where leadership matters, because it’s the leader who sets the tone. When leaders make a choice to put the people first, remarkable things happen.”

Chip Cutter, Editor at LinkedIn, had this to add about Simon’s talk in a post entitled “Simon Sinek: Great Managers Don’t Lay Off Employees.” Here is a snapshot from Chip’s article:

“The advice seems to contradict both economic realities and the oft-quoted wisdom that managers should “hire slow and fire fast,” quickly jettisoning workers who can’t perform or don’t fit into a corporate culture. But Sinek says a different approach is necessary in the workplace. “Hire slow and fire never or almost never.”

The reason, he says, is that layoffs destroy culture. The best companies foster a sense of trust between employees so they can focus on achieving goals together, rather than fighting internal politics. The only way leaders can build what he calls a “circle of safety” is by protecting employees.”

To gain more insight on Simon Sinek’s leadership thoughts, highlighted below is a recent interview with CBS This Morning.

Get ready for Leadercast 2014!

Your leadership will be challenged anew and you will be energized! Join us for a day of insights and interaction.

Leadership is a choice, and leadership is continuing to learn and grow. Doing this, along with an open heart, will embolden our resiliency when time gets more challenging. Great insights from these two leaders and so much more to come with Leadercast on May 9th!


Lead Ahead: Week of January 6, 2014

Happy New Year, Dallas Leaders! In the days and months ahead, we have one great and wonderful thing. We have time to make a change, make a difference, and make an impact. Leading to do one or more of these three things is our challenge and opportunity. Many exciting and energizing activities are happening in Dallas, and we need to jump in and lead.

To begin the new year, highlighted below are some great insights from the Authentic Leadership Dallas and Lead Change communities.

Keys to Success in Business and Your Personal Success by Krista Kotrla. Key quote: “My personal success story continues to unfold but here’s what I realized. Accepting default labels from life’s challenges can easily limit your aim… if you allow it.”

When Do You Know You Are a Leader? by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “Here is a simple way to think about it – It’s moving from ME to WE! You’re no longer constantly thinking, ‘How can I be number one?’ but ‘How can I help my people be the best they can be?’ it’s all about them.”

4 Senses of Character-based Leadership by Mike Henry. Key quote: “To be a character-based leader, you only need four things I’d call senses. Any one of these senses is proof that anyone can be a character-based leader. If you have two or three, you may even have some influence in your homeowners association or in your workplace. But to be a great character-based leader, you’ll need all four.”

Millennial Leaders: Momentum by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “As Boomers and Gen Xers, we need to reach across every generation to learn and share, and Millennial leaders have a similar responsibility. When we remove the barriers, we will cross the leadership gap and really create a new, better story line.”

Lead well in the week ahead and, most importantly, lead well in the year ahead!

Lead Ahead: Week of December 23, 2013

Humility, change, accountability, caring, and seeking the best out of all are a few of the themes from the Lead Change and Authentic Leadership Dallas communities. Each of these are relevant as we close out another year and look ahead to a new one. Enjoy reading each and keep leading well!

Humility: The 5th Sense of Character-based Leadership by Mike Henry. Key quote: “Humility allows us to objectively understand ourselves in a way that is simply most effective in dealing with others. Humility enables us to make the most of our own strengths without offending or creating some type of co-dependent relationship. Humility is an accurate understanding of oneself.”

What One Career Insight Would You Want a 20-Something to Know Now? by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “Our responsibility across each generation is to engage with each other, share our experiences, and raise each other up in the way we lead. We cannot be divisive. We cannot develop stereotypes. We need to remember diversity of experience and insights strengthen us.”

How Leaders Seek the Best in Others? by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “As a leader, what dialogue do have inside your head regarding the people you lead? Is it a bunch of complaints of what they are not doing? Or do you view your team in the best of light even when they fall short of expectations?”

Leading with Personal Accountability by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “Taking responsibility for our choices is a big step toward influencing others in a positive way. I mean, who wants to be around a negative leader? Someone who finds faults and complain about others?”

Three Characteristics of Leaders Who Care by Michael E. Nichols. Key quote: “Caring leadership involves more than raw emotion – pure passion won’t cut it. As a matter of fact, these three characteristics found in effective leaders require discipline that goes well beyond emotion. You can’t care without significant discipline. And passion without discipline is just plain rude!”

Each Year, Hope and Change by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “…the rhythm of hope and change creates a strange, meaningful melody. We need to keep our hope alive. We need to keep our changes alive. We need to lead with hope and change. We need to embrace the community around us.”

 Lead well in the week and year ahead! All the best.