To The Future Leaders, Here Are Some Tips For Your Path

Leadership Lessons: It falls upon each of us to keep in mind and share with others, especially students, the tips we’ve learned on our leadership and development path.

If given the opportunity, what tips would you ask students — or anyone younger than you, for that matter — to consider as they make their way through life, work, and education?

This past fall, I got that opportunity.

I was asked again to present at Prospanica’s Quest 2017, the latest installation of the annual education summit, which, by working with its corporate and community sponsors, always seeks to provide a holistic exposition of educational and developmental tools to minority students from throughout Connecticut.

The event aims to make an impact on these students’ futures by providing various resources which they likely wouldn’t have access to in their own environments.

My presentation — Build Your Best Self To Tackle Your Goals — was built on the strategy of positioning oneself on the best path possible to reach his or her goals by considering and analyzing both the breadth and depth of both goals and resources.

The audience was made up of mostly seniors and juniors, with chaperones and other teachers and administrators sitting in on the presentation as well, during a day filled with motivational presentations, speakers, and workshops. All these resources provided students with tools for the next chapter in their lives, with the hope by all those supporting the students that their next chapter would be college.

To close out my presentation, I provided my top-10 list of tips for them to consider as they make their way into the next chapter of their lives, and beyond. (Although colleagues from throughout my networks contributed their best tips to these students, with the collection included in the workbook I provided during the workshop, I spoke to my own tips as I know their origins.)

Due to time constraints, I was limited to how much I could convey about each of the items, so I wanted to expand upon each in this series of posts. Throughout the series, I’ll talk directly to students or anyone of any level of education, or at any point in their life, who wants to take a proactive approach to their life path going forward.

Although it originated as a message to actual school-age students, the list is meant for students of any kind and any age – of leadership, development, or life.

This series aims to start a discussion. This list, like any other, outlines the points we need to hit, and the things we need to accomplish.

And like any list, especially The Self 60 list, from day to day or from situation to situation, it can evolve. Priorities shift. Goals change. Resources come and go. The list will likely look different in the future than it does today.

For each item on the list below – the list provided to the students at Quest 2017 — each post will cover the following:

What it is…

This section will break down what the item looks like in the everyday. By providing this information, students can keep their eyes and minds open to learning about and utilizing the idea behind the tip.

Why it’s important…

This section will break down the value of the item and what it can contribute to the reader’s life, work, and self. By providing this information, students can weigh how much they want to take the item into account, include it in their learning, and demonstrate it in their life.

Where to get it…

This section will provide insight on how to go about attaining and learning about the skills covered by the item. By providing this breakdown, students will learn to understand what to look for in their life that reflects the item.

Why it’s a Top 10 off The Self 60…

This list is a top-10 list I came up with by whittling down The Self 60 to a more manageable and streamlined collection. The items on The Self 60 tend to be more specific, while these items allow for the lesson to be broadened and more encompassing. In each post, I’ll explain why these items were picked above all others on the Self 60.


The posts in this series can only cover so much and will not capture every form of each idea on the list. The series is mostly an attempt to put the students and young leaders in a mindset which prepares them to become more resourceful in their lives.

This list is a starting point, one that especially hopes to instill the appreciation in students for having both a plan and the knowledge to begin one’s developmental journey.

Similar to the tenets of coaching and the proverb Feed a man to fish and he eats for a day. Teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime, this is about preparation and providing the tools for development, not merely providing the answers.

Here is the list of tips to be covered in the series of posts:

    1. Find your Driver(s) & Motivation(s)
    2. All Your Experiences Structure Your Path Forward
    3. Get An Accountability Partner
    4. Position Yourself For Your Success
    5. Your Worth & Value – Know It / Build It / Provide It / Live It
    6. Face Your Weaknesses & Fears
    7. Always Keep Learning
    8. Develop Your Awareness – Of Self & Others
    9. Be Part Of & Contribute To Your Community
    10. Do Not Wait For Life To Come To You

Again, this is a list that’s always evolving. Which items would you add to the list and which would you take off? What about those on the more extensive Self 60? Why?

If you think back on your life and career, how might have your list from the past evolved in to what it is now? Why?

Realizing where you stand with your list provides solid footing for how you work, interact with others, and live your life.



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