Vision: Three Giant Jumps Every Great Student Leader Takes

Everyone knows great student leaders live life differently than the average Joe. However, not everyone knows how they do it. The three giant jumps is about a few of those differences. These are three very large leaps highly-effective student leaders make in their personal and social development that allow them to make a difference in their world and the world around them.

Before we look at the jumps, let's examine the structure.

Each jump has three elements:

1. The starting place
2. The ending place
3. The leap from one to the other.

All three are critical components of that particular leadership lesson. However, the leap itself is where the magic lives. It is rather simple to recognize the importance of each starting and ending point. How a great student leader makes each jump is the secret ingredient. The "how" is a moving target because it is different for each person, but our purpose here is to kick out into the open a few guiding dynamics for any student desiring to be a great leader.

Jump 1 - Self to Self-Aware

Our first starting place is all about authenticity and trust. Being ok with being you. Not putting a front on for people or being one person in one situation and another person in another. Mastering the "self" starting point is the foundation for trust - the core component of effective and healthy leadership. Every good student leader is comfortable in their own skin.

The ending point is being very self-aware. Recognizing your strengths and your weaknesses. Understanding your personality, behavior patterns, emotional triggers, learning style, core talents, etc. If you are going to be successful, you have to first know who "you" is.

The giant jump in the middle requires tools for examination, disciplining your attention to keep looking, asking, examining and a routine of repeating certain processes each year. This is one reason why involvement in student organizations is so beneficial. Most of these organizations host annual leadership conferences and provide other leadership development opportunities where you have the chance to learn about yourself, challenge yourself and expand your understanding of yourself.

Jump 2 - MySpace to YourSpace

Our second starting place is about the power of being a highly-specialized success agent that owns a "brand" or a MySpace. This doesn't mean you actually have to have a MySpace page, that is just the metaphor. It does mean you have spent time building a reputation that people trust, recognize and know. Every good student leader is branded with personal success.

The ending point is living in YourSpace and supercharging your agent status by being service-minded. It is amazing how many people could jump straight into a leader status just by getting this one thing right - by getting out of their own little world and put their focus on helping others.. Pretty self-explanatory. It involves thinking about how your behavior will impact those around you before you do it. Thinking about the ripples in the pond before you throw the stone, so to speak.

The giant jump in the middle takes Emotional Maturity. This one trait is so important it is one of the Ten PLI Essentials. It is challenging to master, but worth the effort. The best definition of maturity I have ever heard is "when a person thinks more of other's welfare than they do of their own."

Jump 3 - Cause to Because

Our final starting place takes us into the real world and is about how real value is created by student leaders. The cause in this case could be any project, mission, event, etc. that engages your talents, skills and experience. Every good student leader has a purpose for their leadership.

The ending point is all about understanding. Why is your cause important? What difference does it make in the world? What is your role in the cause and how do you bring value to the table?

The giant jump in the middle is an exercise in perspective and connections. Great student leaders have connected the dots between their actions and the actions of their peers and the impact those actions make in the world. They not only see the how (what do I do next as a leader), but they also see the why (what is the real change my next action will create).

Processing Questions for PLI Curriculum Teachers/Trainers:

1. What are you all about?

2. What about you do you need to still discover?

3. What are some of the resources available to you right now that can help you challenge and understand who you truly are?

4. We build our brand every day, what is something you can do on a daily basis to strengthen yours?

5. What is one thing you can do to help others today? This week? This month?

6. What are you passionate about? What is your cause?

7. Why is it important? What difference will it make in the world?

8. What is your role in the cause and how do you bring value?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

WOW i would like to see this workshop it is so true. I think alot of people can connect with this.