How to Step Up into Leadership


  • 8.5min
  • business
  • Sep 10 2018
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I want to share with you a little story, on January 6, 2009 I was only 123 pounds, emaciated, lying in a hospital bed. I felt lost. I felt scared for my life. My surgeon walked into the room, looked me in the eye and told me it was time to go into surgery to remove my rectum, colon and part of my small intestine or I wasn’t going to make it through the month.

In that moment, I had never felt more hopeless.

I was angry. Angry because I felt like my whole life I had been a good person. I loved my family. I went to work. I led by example. Despite everything, nothing could change my circumstances. It was the darkest time of my life. It was absolute rock bottom. I didn’t have an ounce of hope left in me. I felt like I was going to die and I accepted it.

What I didn’t realize was God had a plan for me.

 I was in surgery for 7 hours to take out 8 feet of bowel. The weeks, months, years following this were filled with surgeries, setbacks and constant doctor’s appointments but it was all setting me up for the greatest comeback of my life. I felt and acknowledged all of the emotional pain and I realized it was simply the price I had to pay to access the greatness that was on the other side. My struggle opened me up to the greatness that will leave the legacy for my family.

It was in the darkest moments that I found the light. The past is full of difficult moments, but I am so thankful for them because they led me to where I am today.

But, today’s message isn’t just about my story.

What You Need to Get Your Team Going

Here’s the secret, you want to get your team going? It has nothing to do with your team. It has everything to do with you taking 100% responsibility for everything that happens in your life. Before you can equip, build into and lead those around you, you have to take personal responsibility.

No matter how experienced or inexperienced you are, there are two key things you should keep in mind to be the best leader you can be. When others see these qualities in you, they believe they can be successful too.

  1. Be relatable
  2. Be vulnerable

People want to follow somebody that’s real, full of integrity and authentic. A leader should always be somebody others can relate to. Vulnerability is not a weakness, it means you’re human. If you want to build a team you need to realize pretending to be somebody you’re not is self-destructive and shows a lack of integrity. When you aren’t transparent and vulnerable, the people on your team are going to think they need to do the same.

Here’s my challenge for you, focus on becoming the best version of yourself. Stop looking outward and start looking inward. Stop blaming others for your shortcomings. The answers always have been and always will be in you. You lead your team with energy, your work ethic and your communication.

Show up early to every meeting – lead by example.

Light yourself on fire with your passion.

Run towards your purpose.

People will follow you.

In 1983, Steve Jobs picked up the phone and called a gentleman by the name of John Sculley. John Sculley was a high-up executive at PepsiCo. Steve Jobs said, “Hey Sculley when you’re done selling sugar water to teenagers and you want to change the world—call me back.” Click.

Do you think John Sculley cared what kind of a car Steve Jobs drove? Do you think he cared what kind of a house he had? No. He was recruited to Apple through conviction and vision that was backed up by the relentless work ethic Steve Jobs brought to the environment. At the end of the day, they did change the world.

Everyone has the ability to succeed within themselves. Yes, you will probably need to read some books. Yes, you will have to learn how to build into people. But, that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about going inside yourself and figuring out what your unique blessings are that your Creator gave you. I’m talking about leading a life of example and being proud of who you are. No matter who you are, you have the ability to lead within you.