Making an IMPACT in the world, in your community, in a business and on a person is one of the most exhilarating feelings you will ever have. You want to consistently have that feeling of being impactful. When you look around, there are certain people that have a knack for making an impact, they have a way about them. They join a group at the office, and almost instantly the team starts to get traction. They join a committee for a non-profit, and the committee accelerates. Fearless Leaders are consistent. Fearless Leaders advance any cause. Fearless Leaders bring the 8 attributes we discussed in the last section of b MADE along with their core values in b GOOD and they institute the four principles of b IMPACTFUL for consistent performance.
Consistent performance comes from a consistent approach. Approach a challenge or opportunity differently every time and you will be successful some of the time. Approach the same challenge and opportunity with a SYSTEMS builder mentality, and you will yield a much greater success rate. Why? Because you will learn from each experience and apply a higher level of thinking as you weave through life’s challenges and opportunities. As you become more experienced, you will develop your systems approach to solving challenges and exploiting opportunities.
When I was in elementary school, I played CYO basketball for St. Chris School. I was an average player, but I was way below average at free throw shots. I liked to drive to the hoop and make contact, so I found myself at the free throw line a lot. I wanted to improve, but I had too much doubt in my head when I would go to the line. Then one day, I was watching a Boston Celtics game, and the great Larry Bird was draining every single free throw attempt. I watched in awe, and wished I could shoot like Bird, but what kid didn’t want that. And then one day in an interview, Bird talked about how he took 100 free throw attempts after practice every day, after everybody else had left. In essence, Larry shared his system with me. Starting the next day, I followed Larry’s system, and within a month my free throw percentage had climbed to over 80%. Larry’s system had given me the physical skills to consistently succeed, but equally important, the system had removed my self-talk of doubt and replaced it with confidence. I actually began to enjoy going to the free throw line because I knew I would consistently drain my shot, just like the great Larry Bird. This made such an impression on me that if you come to my office nearly 40 years later, I will show you an autographed Larry Bird basketball on my bookshelf.
The next aspect of making an impact is keeping it SIMPLE. That’s it – simple. As humans with really powerful brains, we tend to overthink, overdesign and overdo things – probably not surprised to hear that. Think about the free throw system Larry taught me – take 100 shots a day after practice, that’s it. There was no discussion of spin on the ball, hand placement, shooting with your legs, focusing on the back of the rim, none of that at all. It was simple – his system was repetition on a daily basis to build memory muscle and instill confidence.
The third aspect of making the biggest impact you can on this planet is BELIEF. You must believe in yourself and believe in others. Fearless Leaders project an aura of what is possible. When a truly Fearless Leader enters a room, it fills with positive energy. Believing a positive outcome is possible, is half the battle to overcoming an obstacle. As a Fearless Leader, you are planting the seeds of success with your mental approach. Sending good vibes of kinetic energy to your friends, family, colleagues and community will always result in a higher level of achievement. Positivity and self-belief are contagious. Spread your belief to one, and watch that belief infuse in your friend, family, colleagues and community. Belief is one of the most powerful tools you can deploy as a Fearless Leader.
The fourth component of the Fearless Leadership system is learning how to CULTIVATE leadership in others. Cultivating leadership is much like a farmer cultivating their crops. It takes a consistent approach; it takes a daily work ethos; it takes nurturing and watering; it takes sunshine from the sun and rain from the skies; it takes time and investment; and it takes a positive outlook that with all this hard work put in, a wonderful crop will follow. So, in essence, you are cultivating and growing leaders in your crops, you are investing time and energy into people, you are watering their minds, and breathing positivity into their beliefs.
When you instill a simple systems approach and cultivate a belief in others, you will make an EXPONENTIAL impact on the world. Leadership is tough to quantify – I wonder if it can even be measured. In my opinion, the best way to measure it is simple, ask yourself: how many people have you influenced to become leaders and improve their leadership. How many people have you cultivated? When you have taught people to believe in themselves, you have made an impact on a much larger community. You have impacted the person directly, but you have exponentially impacted the friends, family, colleagues and community of that individual. And that extends your Fearless Leadership exponentially.
By teaching your simple systems, sharing beliefs, and cultivating the seeds of leadership in others, a Fearless Leader creates an EXPONENTIAL impact—creating a legacy of leaders leading others.