27 Lessons from the 2017 Global Leadership Summit

As you know, all my articles thus far have been “original stuff”.  For this article, I felt compelled to share some “other people’s stuff”.  I had the great opportunity to join the team from Xcellero Leadership (xcellero.com) at the 2017 Global Leadership Summit.  The GLS is a worldwide gathering of 400,000 leaders from 128 countries to hear lessons of leadership from global leaders in industry, ministry, as well as from top selling authors.   In short, it was outstanding and I highly recommend it for anyone who is trying to build their own leadership arsenal.  If you were there, you know how good it was. If you were not, below are my GLS 2017 Golden Nuggets.  Enjoy.

Bill Hybels, Founder Global Leadership Summit and Willow Creek Community Church, 25,000 members

  • Armed with enough humility, leaders can learn from anyone
  • Mere financial success should bore you
  • Your culture will only be as healthy as your leader wants it to be

Translation:  Don’t be so blindly arrogant that you think you have all the answers. You don’t. If you fake it, your smarter employees will crush you. If you empower them, they will lift you.  Money is awesome but is the result of great work. If it is the only goal, it’s like trying to catch a greased pig.  If you define a culture, live it.   If you don’t, you have a house of cards on your hands.

Andy Stanley, Author of 20 books and founder of North Point Ministries, 70,000 members

  • Somebody, somewhere, is messing with the rules of the prevailing model
  • Be a student, not a critic
  • Close minded leaders close minds

Translation:  The rules of what you do are going to change.  Either you change them or someone else will.  Stop whining and learn something new.   If you think you have all the answers, you are an idiot.  Demonstrate to your team that you will always listen, and you will always learn. That will define a culture faster than anything else.  The alternative will cause you to have to adjust to your competitors who changed the prevailing model!

Sheryl Sandberg, COO Facebook, Author of Lean In and Option B

  • Hire the people you are going to need, not the ones that you need now
  • Seek joy

Translation: So important for growing companies that need to grow people to secure their future

Marcus Buckingham, Founder Marcus Buckingham Company and Best Selling author

  • Remember your best team? Your job is to build more of them
  • Performance ratings are bogus.  They tell you more about the rater than the ratee
  • The best thing you can do for your people is “weekly strengths based coaching on near term future work”

Translation:  If you have not overhauled your performance management system at your Company in the last 5 years, you need to.  Much of what we thought about ratings and appraisals are a big time thing of the past

Marcus Lemonas, Star of NBC’s The Profit, and CEO of Camping World and Good Sam

  • When you unlock someone’s heart, and gain their trust, anything can happen
  • What are you willing to die for? Live for it.

Translation:  Read “The Speed of Trust”.   If your team trusts you and trusts each other’s motives and intentions, you will break existing barriers to progress and avoid new ones.   If they don’t trust you, better look for a new gig.

Bryan Stevenson, Founder and Executive Director, Equal Justice Initiative

  • Proximity to the problem is essential to solve it
  • It takes courage to remain hopeful in daunting situations

Translation: Don’t insult your people by trying to help them when you don’t know what they are living.  Put on a helmet and grab a shovel and go walk in their shoes.  Don’t be a quitter.  It sets trends for your culture, and for your own life. Quitters quit.

Laszlo Bock, Senior Advisor to Google, Author of Work Rules

  • Connect people to your Mission, and you will triple results
  • Give your people more autonomy than you are comfortable with

Translation: Your team will only “take the hill” if they know why they are taking it. They won’t take it just because you asked them to.  If you don’t regularly have that feeling of “I wonder if he/she can deliver on that”, you aren’t letting go of responsibility enough.  If you can’t gamble on your folks, you have the wrong folks. Or you are the wrong leader.

Juliette Funt, CEO Whitespace at Work

  • The Pause is becoming a memory due to the tyranny of the urgent
  • Decrappify your workflow
  • Know the thieves of your productivity

Translation: If you feel like you are too busy, you are too busy.  Slow down. Think.  Work does not equal progress.  Next time your boss asks what you are doing right now, say, “nothing”. And see how she responds.

 Sam Adeyemi, Founder Day Star Christian Centre in Nigeria, 25,000 Members

  • In leadership, you don’t attract what you want, you attract who you are
  • The transformation in the lives of your team is a test of your leadership
  • You die at one level to evolve to another

Translation: Don’t just “do”.  “Be”.  Be what you want your team to be.   They will follow who you are more than what you do. It’s your job to transform their lives at some level.  If you don’t, it’s on you. And people will stop following you.

Immaculee Ilibagiza, Best Selling Author

  • She escaped the genocide in Rwanda while her family was slaughtered. She is now Advocate for the power of forgiveness. How is that possible?  I can’t even begin to repeat her story so read it for yourself.  Her book is called “Left to tell”.

Gary Haugen, Founder and CEO International Justice Mission

  • Fear is the greatest destroyer of dreams.
  • Switch from defense to offense in your own life
  • Courage is contagious

Translation: Do not be afraid. It will cripple you. Run into the fire.  Stop playing defense with your detractors, opponents and competitors. Attack. When that doesn’t work, attack.  Your team will sense your fear, and they will be afraid. Your team will absorb your courage, and they will follow you in the attack.