by Syeita Rhey-Fisher

During his 2016 Democratic National Convention speech, President Obama revealed some key leadership elements that transcends across career fields. Has he actually mastered or achieved these components of leadership himself? Well, the answer to that question depends on which side of the political fence you stand. There is a lot of controversy concerning his own practices during his administration at the White House, but that debate requires its own separate article. Regardless of how you may feel about President Obama, no one can doubt his accomplishments on the road to presidency or deny his ability to speak and inspire. He is a phenomenal orator, period. As I listened to President Obama’s speech, here were the 5 top leadership quotes that really resonated with me…

  1. “Most issues are rarely black & white…. even when you may be 100% right, getting things done requires compromise.”
  2. “In order for progress to happen, we have to listen to each other. And see ourselves in each other. And fight for our principles but also fight to find common ground.”
  3. “When the other side refuses to compromise, progress can stall. People are hurt by the inaction. Supporters can grow impatient and worry that you are not trying hard enough. That you may have sold out. But I promise you, when we keep at it, when we change enough minds…then progress do happen.”
  4. “Hold them accountable until they get the job done.”
  5. “She has made mistakes. Just like I have. Just like we all do. That’s what happens when… we try.”

So how do these leadership concepts apply to you? Whether you are an administrator speaking to the parent of a student or a manager dealing with a customer, there must be room for compromise. In order to understand how to sell a product or an idea, you must find common ground with the consumer. If you want your investors to stay on board, you must remain transparent and open. And if you want a long and productive relationship with your staff, workers, or community, you must listen to their concerns. All stakeholders must be held responsible for the success of our student’s learning under effective school leadership. A company must be held accountable for building the leadership capacity of their franchise owners; this guarantees performance at their full potential and ensures sustainability of the company. Many entrepreneurs and business owners have taken on great risks, failed, then learned from their mistakes before becoming successful and influential. This would NOT be possible had they not tried in the first place.

The 5 quotes listed above are key elements to effective leadership regardless of your field.

Did I miss any? What do you think?