The Underbelly of Leadership

Yes, I had to stay home today because I am snowed in. It’s the first time in my memory that we have had this much snow in Surrey and I am currently looking out through my french doors onto a truly beautiful Winter scene.

I have been absorbing a great deal of remarkable teachings recently. I attended Keith Cunningham’s 4 Day MBA which filled in all the gaps on my financial literacy and was very empowering. Remember – knowledge is power! This Saturday, I attended a women’s leadership event in London with 200 other women and enjoyed being a delegate and giving myself permission to learn (it would have been easy to say ‘I know all this’ with my arms folded!). Remember – there is no learning from a fixed position so try to maintain a ‘beginners mind’ at all times.

On both seminars I was struck by the central theme being exactly the same. Two completely different subjects and only one point that really seemed to get LOTS of air coverage – the importance of good character.

Character is the under-belly of leadership. It is who you are when nobody is looking. It is who you are when you are at home as well as work. It is how well you engage with your principles and how you guard what is important to you. Ask yourself this ‘who am I when I disagree?’ Do you know yourself well enough to maintain dignity in all difficult situations. Do you use the law of assumption instead of clear communication? Are you defensive and agressive when you feel unfairly treated? Do you avoid rather than confront difficulties from an ‘I’m OK, you’re OK’ standpoint? Do you have a sober-minded view of yourself combined with self confidence? Can you be humorous enough for the people that you lead to feel comfortable? How would you rate your integrity on a scale of 1-10? Are you a servant leader or an autocrat?

Don’t underestimate the importance of these questions. They are the only questions that will move your life and your career forward. In order to have more (more health/wealth/love/money/success) we first need to become more.

Enjoy the snow!


  1. Thank you so much. I really appreciate the feedback. May I please ask a small favour? Do pass the word so that others can enjoy the blog too ….I am going to be launching some exciting new products soon that everybody can enjoy. Live a great day!

  2. I think you have made a very good point about ‘giving yourself permission to learn’. Sometimes we find it difficult to find the time but we are all responsible for our own development and should make the time.

    You reminded me of something my Dad, who was a servant leader, used to say…You must have a servant’s heart. He reminded me of Ghandi, so humble yet exuded authority and respect from those around him.

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