Today, I thought about my service as President of the Palo Alto Area Bar Association and how it involves all sorts of varied and persistent responsibilities. Every day, all sorts of matters go through my inbox: matters related to every event, member, operational detail, meeting, administrative requirement, planning logistic, certification and reporting requirement etc., all issues outward facing and inward.
This is an illustration of how being a “leader” is not about power, but work. A lot of work. The difference between work being enjoyable or not is whether one feels able to put in the energy. No matter whether we lead at home, at the office or in the community, everything needs to be done, done well and done . . . nicely. That last item, the ability to execute in a friendly way, personably and humanely, reflects of our enjoyment in the work. It’s not about some last minute superficial flourish of style; it’s motivation.
Given all the energy required, and whether or not you end up enjoying or hating the work, the first step to being a good leader would be to do what you love.
Even though I keep pretty busy every day, the busy-ness is invigorating, not draining. It's because of the outstanding groups of people and this wonderful community.
So I hope to think more about my adventures working from within a vibrant, conscientious organization and share them here. In the moments in between, I'll also post on Business and Intellectual Property Law. Hope it all helps!