Stop, Look, Listen & Laugh is a Powerful Leadership Development Tool
Who are the key leaders, managers, coaches, and mentors who invested in your leadership development when you were still an “emerging leader” – still rough around the edges?
What sage words were deeply imprinted into your heart or head, even though it may have happened decades ago?
Today, I pay tribute to one of these people. Janie Jasin, author, speaker, coach, mentor, and dear friend, deserves my deepest gratitude.
Invitation/Challenge Matrix: Janie’s approach as a coach and mentor aligns with the Invitation/Challenge Matrix, a powerful leadership development tool.
First, she invited me into a relationship. She got to know my gifts, talents, dreams, aspirations, fears, and calling. She also shared herself and her story, opening a treasure chest of knowledge, expertise, and experience.
But, she didn’t stop there. She challenged me relentlessly to up my game. She pushed me to see life from different perspectives, to feel life from the vantage point of the other person. In a moment of heart-to-heart clarity, she locked eyes with me, “Danita! Stop, Look, Listen. And, most importantly, Laugh!”
It’s at the intersection of Invitation and Challenge that paradigms are shifted, and fruitful growth happens.
First Imprint: I first saw Janie in Minneapolis where we were both facilitating workshops at a convention for high-performance leaders. When I finished my workshop on how to inspire high-performance sales teams, I sneaked into the back for the room where Janie was speaking. Within moments, I was spellbound – as was the rest of the audience. Her ability to compellingly communicate was…well…I don’t have the words to express the imprint her words left on my life. I still remember the moment.
As I was launching Millennials Matter, seeking to energize and equip senior leaders to actually stop, look, and listen to the young leaders in their life, I wanted to up my communication game. I reached out to one of the best, Janie Jasin, and started working with her as a speaking coach.
Here are some of my favorite Janie Jasin Wisdom take-aways…
On our hands: No one has the same gifts in their hands as you do. Your hands might be a mother, a coach, a mentor. Reach out your hand to help someone in your life.
On our eyes: When you work with someone, or you talk to an audience, seek to really see the people in front of you. See their talents and their strengths. See what it is they truly need to succeed and to accomplish their goals. (This conversation with Janie inspired part of my TedX talk where I speak on spotlighting the talents of your emerging leader.)
On our words: Speak from your heart and not your head. Be vulnerable and share your own failures, and the lessons you learned from them. She often said, “Danita, we don’t want to know how smart you are – we want to know how real you are! (She worked overtime on this lesson with me!)
On our laughter: During one of our coaching conversations, Janie looked me square in the eye and said, “Danita, I know you’re a go-getter and a high-achiever, but you need to relax more and have fun – even when you’re working.” Here is Janie’s Humor Formula:
“Stop, Look, Listen – Laugh. Humor shares, humor sells.”
I invited Janie to the launch of Millennials Matter in Minneapolis and that’s when she gifted me with this special message, which she penned. I posted this inspiring poem in my office as a reminder that I want to be a Janie Jasin to other “emerging leaders” – others who are rough around the edges. To be a catalyst for transformational growth in others by inviting them into a relationship and challenging them to “up their game” (where they want to grow and improve). To be more intentional to Stop, Look, Listen – Laugh.
Success is the feeling you get when you know
You did something so special; you were the star of your show.
It’s a fire that crackles and feels like it glows
You get all excited right down through your toes.
It makes you so peppy, you can hardly sit still.
Your mind dances around you from ridges to rill.
You speak with conviction YOU BELIEVE IN YOURSELF.
The people you meet stay on just to listen.
They stay all around you to learn how to glisten.
And later that day when you are alone,
You find that you’re smiling right through to the bone.
For success is the service, turned into esteem.
You did something for others, your lamp’s on high beam.
You look on ahead not frightened or shy.
You can see more good coming, you know by and by.
That you’ve got what it takes to build on the past
Remembering highlights and memories that last.
Putting others out front, you turn inside out.
You feel what they’re feeling. Their praises you shout.
You wrap it in presents, and still you get more.
You draw it in pictures, it comes in the door.
You keep on giving it and giving it away.
Copyright, Janie Jasin, 1998.
So, who are the rough-around-the-edges leaders in your sphere of influence?
Who are the emerging leaders who you might invest time in building a relationship with so that respect is built and you can challenge them to be their best self?
Where might you be more intentional about Stop, Look, Listen – Laugh?
Stay tuned for my upcoming series on developing high-performance sales and leadership teams. I will discuss the Invitation/Challenge matrix in more detail.
Leadership Lesson: Invite an up-and-coming leader into your area of expertise and challenge them to grow.
Leadership Question: Who is the emerging leader in your life whom you can invite into your world so that you can challenge them to develop their full potential?