By Kevin Alexander 4 Things I’ve Learned Just start As the saying goes: “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” There are ways to start in the direction of your dreams without having all of the necessary resources. Though you may not have everything or all the support you need to complete your project, that doesn’t mean you can’t get started. You never know who you can meet along the way. Be available Be willing to get involved in organizations or events that are related to your mission. Within reason, make yourself available to opportunities to network and grow. More and more conversations and social interactions are going virtual, … [Read more...] about Influencing as a Black Man in his Twenties
BY SUE M. COBB, U.S. Ambassador (Ret.) Many individuals who achieve important leadership roles in business, government and philanthropic organizations, when asked about their paths to challenging and rewarding positions of influence, will include in their responses a reference to one or more ‘role models’. What is a Role Model? A role model is obviously someone to whom the person has looked to emulate successful behaviors in their chosen field. Role models can appear in most any type of group from police departments to orchestras to churches to business associations, to most any field in which practitioners communicate. They usually, but not always, relate to … [Read more...] about What are the Characteristics of an Effective ‘Role Model’?
by Aminata Diop-Kunta My name is Aminata Diop-Kunta. I am an entrepreneur based in Dakar, Senegal. I have been working as a translator and interpreter for more than four years. I own a vegan/vegetarian business and I am also a sustainable development consultant for an environmental studies firm. I am married and spend a lot of time acting silly with my two-year old daughter who completes me. Lesson #1. Make a Decision As an entrepreneur, I can trace my earliest qualities of leadership from the time one of my closest high-school friends died in November 2014. This was quite a traumatic and unexpected event. I lived in NYC at the time and I was 26 years old, a … [Read more...] about Leadership Lessons as an Entrepreneur and a Mother in my Twenties
by Charles A. Ray, U.S. Ambassador (Ret.) During my 50+ years in government, 20 years in the military and just over 30 years in the U.S. Foreign Service, I have been privileged to have been assigned to a number of challenging leadership positions. One of my assignments, as ambassador to Cambodia, involved going into an embassy that had been totally demoralized, with the mission to get them back on track. It took some doing, but within six months I had taken an embassy that had deteriorated so much, some of its consular functions had been taken away and assigned to the embassy in Thailand. I had a young economic officer who was a good writer, so I’d … [Read more...] about 6 Things My Grandmother Taught Me About Effective Leadership
by George Carner, USAID Mission Director Inspired by Prudence Bushnell’s article “From Managing to Leading” I would like to share the lessons that served me best as a USAID Mission Director over a 35-year foreign service career. I found that moving from management to leadership was a fluid transition. Before assuming senior management roles, I had served as a management intern, a program manager, and a long-range planner. Working for able leaders, I saw the power of setting inspiring goals combined with following practical strategies around which teams could excel. Applying these lessons helped me become more strategic as a manager. Using program … [Read more...] about Growing from Manager to Leader: Observations and Lessons