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Top 5 Quotable Phrases from the Creative Leadership Workshop

Last week many of us in ISC attended a workshop called Creative Leadership at the Marriott in Waikiki. Presenter Steve Hammond covered a range of topics such as discovering leadership, creating a high-performance team, developing a creative team vision, and coaching those you lead to performance. While I had some difficulty engaging in the material due to the sage on the stage form of delivery, the presenter did have some kernels of wisdom buried in the six hours of lecture.

Here's a few of the best quotes I jotted down:

1. The world is run by those who show up.

One of the first things a leader must do is be present. A person may have great talents and ideas, but without one's own initiative nothing will get done.

2. It's not how smart you are; it's how much energy you bring.

The second quote is similar to the first. Not only should a leader show up, a good boss sets an example for everyone by actively developing his or her own character and taking an interest in the professional growth of everyone on the team.

3. Delegating is asking for help.

Another leadership quality is the ability to ask for help. Many people perceive this as a sign of weakness, but effective leaders delegate tasks to their team knowing that one person can not do it all and success results from a shared effort.

4. Ignorance we can fix; stupidity we can not.

This quote comes from an old army mantra. In the context of leadership, the person in charge can employ training to teach skills and transfer knowledge. However, talents are innate, untrainable qualities that must be a central consideration during the hiring process.

5. The first 45 minutes sets the tone for the day.

A leader brings their best effort and a positive attitude to work everyday. Realizing that one is in control of their own mood, a smart person takes charge of the beginning hour of the day to do the things that will establish a productive attitude for the next 23 hours.

The above phrases were just a few of the tidbits from the Creative Leadership Workshop that stood out for me, but a lot more was said that may have struck others as meaningful. Please leave a comment or write your own post on what you took away from the session. I'm interested in comparing and contrasting our individual experiences.

(Image from


Cassie said…
I would like to add to your post and say WIIFM was also a good one.

WIIFM - What's In It For Me
MEnos said…
Here are a couple more quotes I found to be helpful:
"When you model initiative, like minded people are attracted to you."
This quote reminds me that when people are doers, other doers come in to help out, and people who are not doers will stay away, so you will get the kind of coworkers/employees that you need.

"An Unconscious Competent Worker=A Bored Worker"
Both leaders and employees need to constantly challenge themselves and recommit to their purpose, so that they know not just how to do their jobs, but also why they do their jobs.

"Creative leaders learn that it's not all about me--it's all about others."
Whereas, as Cassie points out WIIFM is a prime motivator for workers, thinking of others' needs is what makes a creative leader.

Overall, I think "creative" was just used as a sexy way to repackage a seminar on leadership, and other adjectives could have been inserted: good, compassionate, effective, capable, thoughtful. Offering only one set of steps for "creative" leaders seems, well, the antithesis of creative, but overall the seminar was an interesting one that at the very least gave our team a similar reference point when thinking of leadership.

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