I recently started reading a book called How Great Women Lead, co-authored by Bonnie St. John and Darcy Deane. The book is a mother-daughter trip around the world interviewing extraordinary women in leadership positions about their lives and how their experiences have shaped their leadership style in the professional world. It is an extremely interesting and inspirational read (I mostly like the life stories and the lessons they learned).

I’ve found that you can learn so much about yourself in reading about other people’s experiences – how your own life’s experiences may be relatable or entirely different but the moral is still the same. While Bonnie and Darcy have narrow focuses (happiness and leadership, respectively) I find the process of being a leader subject to all the ups and downs in our life journey.

Here are some questions to ask as we go through our life journey:

1. How do we find direction and purpose?
2. What gets you out of bed in the morning? What drives you and inspires you?
3. How do you balance work and life? How do you determine what your priorities are?
4. What does it mean to you to be a good leader? Who (or what) has had the most impact in shaping your leadership style?
5. Is there a moment that has changed your life for the better – or vice versa? How has it shaped who you are today, both professionally and personally?

Leadership is simply a game of deciding what you want, developing a plan to get there, taking daily actions on that plan, seeing what works and what doesn’t, and adjusting your approach until you get to your destination. 

 -Dina Schultz