Photo by Author
Are you a regular reader of my weekly leadership article? … If you are, thank you! Thank you for allowing me to share what I view to be best leadership practices in the area of leadership based on personal learnings and academic research. Thank you for “listening” to me. My hope, desire and prayer is that it adds value and that you’re able make practical, value-added applications in your many roles as a leader at work, school, home, church, civic, athletic, and/or government organizations.
This week’s article is a bit different. In fact, of the 100+ articles I’ve written in the last two years, this is a first. I hope it adds some context, some color to WHY I write and bit of insight into the author. Me. I hope it helps you better understand my writing style and maybe a few of my idiosyncrasies.
OK, here we go. First, I write because I like it. It helps me think through issues, challenges, and the like. It brings focus to me. I would do it if there were 1+ million readers or zero. Please don’t get me wrong. I love having readers of my weekly articles, but I do it (write) because it helps me think things through. I hope that it helps others. During the last 30+ years of working, I’ve often had people ask me to write down my thoughts, to share my ideas. Writing for LeadStrategic is one of the ways I share.
A few caveats and idiosyncrasies. I try to keep the articles accessible. I don’t want to patronize anyone nor do I want to use formal, academic-style writing. It’s too obtuse, in my opinion. I’m humbled that readers from many endeavors have contacted me to say an article has helped them. Teachers, executives, pastors, and stay-at-home parents (and many in between) have provided positive feedback. Thank you. Others have provided feedback that they don’t like my articles or writing style. For example, I don’t write in a grammatically correct fashion. Some people love this. Others don’t.
I’ve also received feedback and questions concerning my “examples.” There have been a few instances where a reader thought I was writing about them specifically or about their organization. The short answer is “no.” The longer answer requires a bit of explanation. But before moving on, have you ever been to a sermon or a lecture and thought the speaker was speaking directly to you? Like they knew your secret thoughts? Well, they didn’t. They gave a talk and it hit you between the eyes. You were convicted or bothered or happy because what they said resonated with you, but their message might have resonated with others as well. Hopefully it did.
First let me say (again) that I’m not perfect. See previous articles for details. … I’ve worked for 30+ years in several large corporations, been actively involved in several small and large churches and parachurch organizations, participated in numerous civic organizations, played on a few dozen athletic teams, and listened to countless stories from friends and colleagues alike. When I use a story or share an example, it is a combination of people and experiences that span time, organization, and people. I don’t use the actual names of people, their organizations, or their functional areas. I do this for a couple reasons. One, I would never put down a specific individual or organization in public forum. This is wrong. Two, I find the examples often communicate better when I combine several experiences so I really couldn’t use the actual name of the individual or organization even if I wanted to because it wouldn’t be accurate. Make sense? Still with me?
Next, let me add an important “disclaimer.” The views I share and my best practices don’t necessarily represent those of my wife, kids, church, or any of the organizations with whom I’ve been affiliated, at present or in the past. Can I add that it’s disappointing to me that I even have to mention this but it’s reflective of the world in which we live?
During the last two years, I’ve had a few people tell me that I shouldn’t “blog.” These people were concerned that others would see that I was publically expressing my love for Jesus and that there would be some readers who disagreed with my personal views on leadership. But I’m going to keep blogging and writing a weekly leadership article. I’m going to occasionally say something that’s controversial. If I wrote only what was politically correct, what value would I be adding? There is no reward without a degree of risk. I believe too many pretend leaders today play it safe. They’re bland, like Melba toast. No spice. No flavor. And no value. I want to be sensitive and caring to people. I want to be tactful. But I don’t want to be bland.
I’ve been blessed to receive a lot of positive feedback about my leadership articles and how it has practically helped others. This is humbling and rewarding. I hope you like our LeadStrategic leadership blog. I hope you like my weekly article. I hope you laugh, cry, reflect, and grow as a leader because of what you’ve read. I hope you come regularly and bring others. I hope you come as a friend. Yet, if you come as a critic, skeptic or Monday morning quarterback, there’s room for you too. I pray you are positively influenced. I pray you grow. I pray you will learn to love and serve others. It’s one of the reasons I write. One of the “why’s.”
As always, the floor is open to your comments, suggestions, thoughts, and feedback.
Dr. Robert Gerwig is an agent of change and is able to balance the needs of the business and the needs of people. Dr. Gerwig believes and practices the values of performance and delivery of business metrics while simultaneously developing and growing people into leaders. You can contact him at RobertGerwig[at]LeadStrategic.com.