What is leadership development?
There are many psychological assessment tools are used in the leadership development programs in the world; it is indeed very interesting to know oneself with these tools. But what does leaderships mean in daily life? It all goes back to the capability and willingness in introspection, learning, integrity, listening and communication.
It is not just about how one can manage others or inspire others, but it is about how to manage self and inspire self through introspection and integrity. It is not about how to lead, but it is also about how to be lead. It is not just about the measurement of career achievement, but it is about what can you learn from life by knowing what kind of person you are becoming to.
One probably has many talents or with a lot of interesting working experience, but are these achievements make s/he a good leader or a good person? It all depends on the interpretation from others based on what they could see and feel, but not what they were told.
Learning in life goes beyond what a piece of paper can prove, it is about what and how to manage the process of introspection and learning on the daily base.
For young people, having a right diploma is indeed important, because they need to have a good door-knocking stone to open the door for professional career. But once they step their feet on their path, the real learning begins. Because in real life, it needs not only intelligent IQ but most of all what and how to put the integrity and EQ in actions.
Think big, talk well and act small.
I’ve tried to apply for the Master program for Global Management Program with the AMS in 2003 because even at the age nearly 50 at that time I felt the need of having a right diploma to make a new beginning, but unfortunately my application was rejected because of having too much working experience and age. The rejection from AMS and those horrified chaos happened in my life during that time did not weaken my desire for learning. So I felt, I lost everything that people could see or found important in life, I became a single mother with two young boys who were also under stress and we were worrying about what tomorrow will be; but those painful experience and chaotic change helped me to find myself back. When facing a lot physical threats and psychological stress, I found the strength by being able to face the consciousness with honesty and smile. As matter of fact, all these painful learning have expanded my understanding of how to live by learning and sharing. I can’t change others, but I can change myself.
If you were only thinking about ‘the measurement of achievement’, then you actually are giving the key of how to live your life on other’s hands.
教學 means “teaching” in English, but in Chinese it actually is a combination of ‘teaching and learning’. Empty your cup then you can start to refill it again. When you can consider to share and stay on the path of continued learning as means to expand the horizon in life, then can consider to have a simple dialogue with yourself everyday, “I will, and am doing my best; and learning is fun“. When you can have a honest dialogue with yourself without any bitterness or fear, then you start to take the control of your life back without worrying what and how to measure the achievement.
How to live with a clear consciousness without fear is a life time learning process. Pay attention to your starting point, don’t worry about when and how it will end. Because we can not change what have already happened in the past, but we do have to question ourselves what and how much have we learnt from the past; we don’t really know what might happen in the future, we should, however, know the consequence of our actions today.
There is no school can contain or restrain the learning you need, it’s in your life.
©copyrighted Mei Lan Hsiao, Belgium Chinese Tea Arts Center / Belgium Chinese Tea Culture Association, Antwerp 9/12/2015