Saturday, July 13, 2013

13 Commandments of Being a Leader

You've heard the phrase “born leader.” I don't believe in the concept. I think leaders are made, albeit from circumstance or necessity.

My first reluctant taste of leadership was running for editor of the high school paper. I had never wanted the spotlight in school or social groups, always the quiet, studious type. However, in my senior year, when I had reservations about the person running for the position, I threw my hat into the ring and won. Soon I discovered I liked being the person making the decisions and improving the newspaper.

Flash forward to my time in the military. In bootcamp, I was made the education officer. This gave me many privileges and responsibilities. Later, when I was promoted, I got my own room in the barracks and required to look after the WAVEs in my unit. I also did inspections, which I took seriously. Being
“by the book” made me immensely unpopular.

This happened again with my job at the Sheriff's Department. When I became secretary to an undercover narcotics team, I wasn't content to sit behind my desk and do transcription. I researched allegations and did background checks on criminals, compiling enough information to hand my detectives fully fleshed-out cases.

The other day I found myself with the realization that I use many of the traits I developed in past jobs and now apply them to my writer's life. I took a page from the bible and came up with these 13 commandments:

Thou shalt earn your credibility.
Honor your words and reputation.
Thou shalt not spam the Internet. Less of you is often more.
Thou shalt offer quality, not quantity.
If thou see a need, use your creativity to fill it.
Do unto others and share information and opportunities.
Thou shalt take responsibility for your education and career decisions.
Thou shalt display strength, not weakness.
Take ye calculated risks and utilize strategy
Be always aware of your image, but don't buy into your own PR.
Honor your worthiness.
Thou shalt make your flaws work in your favor.
Do not covet thy neighbors' success. Use it as inspiration.

And tho you be beset by enemies, thou shalt take the high road. Revenge only lowers you to their level. Give your foes a chance to hang themselves. Feel free to enjoy their downfall.

19 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

Great ones. I hope I can keep them in mind. Some are pretty hard, but good ideas often are.

Liane Spicer said...

Great commandments. I try to abide by these in all areas of life, but I need to print this for constant reinforcement.

marja said...

Words to live by, and well thought out. Although, you can be a little bossy sometimes. LOL Just joking. Some of us would lose out on opportunities if it wasn't for you. I appreciate your hard work.
Marja McGraw

Lorna Collins - said...

Good ones!

john M. Daniel said...

Worthy advice, Sunny.

Julie Luek said...

Not buying into our own PR-- so true! Humility is always a strong component of any leader!

John Addiego said...

Nice advice, Sunny! I am pondering the ways to use my flaws to my advantage, since I can name a few, but also liking the way integrity plays such a crucial role in your list.
Take care,
John

Carole Avila said...

Thanks, Sunny. These are all great. Of course, I was hoping to see one like, "Thou shall consume pounds of chocolate to stay sweet"...

Sunny Frazier said...

A little bossy? Now Marja, we all know I'm the Evil Queen.

Sorry Carole, consuming chocolate isn't a commandment, it's wonderfully sinful!

Mike Befeler, author of geezer-lit and paranormal mysteries said...

Well stated

Jim Callan said...

Great advice, Sunny. Since I have so many flaws, if I could turn just half of them to my advantage, I could really soar. Maybe I'll work on just one for now.

Augie said...

Those were great and hopefully someday I will be able to live by. Hey now, the original 13 Commandments are easier to live by (lol). As always Sunny you give us food for thought. augie

C.L. Swinney said...

I'm all for these Commandments! oooh, look, I used an exclamation point. Thou shalt not use too many of these...

Great advice Sunny.

Eileen Obser said...

All good commandments to live by. Like Liane, I'll have to print them out and keep them nearby. Thanks, Sunny.

marta chausée said...

So you had to go God three better, huh, Sunny?

Talk about bossy...

Amy Reade said...

I see you agree with Jesus about doing unto others! Great post, as usual...thanks!

Dac said...

What was the old movie - "Waterhole 51" oe something like that?

"Do unto others, before they do unto you."

Sounds like a commandment to an old Texas Ranger.

Joyce A. said...

Born to be a humble leader. Thanks for sharing your list. Every point is food for thought.

Elaine Faber said...

How interesting that you should create these commandments today. My son has had me editing his six sermons on the Lord's Prayer this week and he tells me next he's working on sermons for the ten commandments! No such thing as coincidence, right? Your thoughts are timely and wise, oh great leader.