Welcome to ROI Wisdom.  I have not written to you since before Leadercast 2014.  Thankfully things have been busy and I want to get back on track with sharing the wisdom I gained from Leadercast this year as well as other venues I attend for Professional Development.

   “We equip People and Organizations to grow, lead and succeed!”
           Key Learning Points from Andy Stanley at Leadercast 2014
Welcome to ROI Wisdom.
This year’s theme at Leadercast was “Beyond You”.  It challenged leaders to think differently and in fact behave differently and challenged traditional perceptions of what it means to be a Leader, and what you do as a leader, especially in the 21st Century.  It asked the question…”Are you a Leader worth following?”

So the thing about change is our first human gut reaction generally is negative.  Especially if we do not understand it or see how it applies to us.  So let me give you some reasons why being a “Beyond You” Leader is worth taking a second look.

First of all let me define what was meant by a “Beyond You” Leader.  A “Beyond You” Leader means giving information to those you are leading that changes their lives and not solely relying on promotions for motivation.  It means being the kind of leader that actually cares about your people and they know it by your actions and day to day interactions with them. 

This spring I attended an HR function that Citadel Bank was providing for its customers and the speaker, Merrick Rosenberg shared an interesting statistic and story that justifies why Leadership needs to change to “Beyond You” to get the same or better results you have been getting to date. 

The statistic is this…36% of the current workforce is of the Millennial generation, meaning born in 1985 up to basically now, although we are entering the next generation currently.  By 2020, 50% of the workforce will be of the Millennial generation.  The story Merrick told to offer perspective on Leadership Style was think of when you went to school.  What did the classroom look like?  Was it rows of chairs or desks all lined up and the Teacher talking up front? More Authoritarian?  Or was your room arranged in an open U or in pods or round tables and you accomplished your school work in teams and sharing and the teacher facilitated the discussion, and it was a lot of self-learning and the relationship with the Teacher.  The teachers that were respected with the baby boomers were those who were clearly the authority and strict and taught discipline.  The Teachers that are respected now are the ones the students feel like them and they like the teacher and feel like they really know them and vice versa.  I cannot tell you how many young people I hear say I did not do well in that teacher’s class because I did not like them or they did not like me or both.

So how does that translate into the workplace and influence leadership?  What it means is that in order for your workforce to accept change, learn new things and be motivated to do well, they have to feel like the Authority figure, You as a Leader, really get them, respect them, care about them beyond their work and share information with them to empower them to do the work on their own.  They need very clear specific directions, but then allow them to do it and do it their way, as long as they are clear on the results that are expected.  They also move at a very fast pace and so may not understand why things or responses take what feels like to them as forever, even though for us Baby Boomers, same day is a fast response.  Bottom line, motivation to do their best is all about the relationship they have with their boss.

Are you a “Beyond You” Leader?  What are your relationships like with your co-workers and/or Direct Reports?  What would they say about You?  What action can you take to show you care?

In the next newsletter, we will continue to talk about what it means to be a "Beyond You" Leader and the benefits.      
                                         Dana Riker Jackson/CEO
                                                 Riker Opportunity Institute, Inc.
Riker Opportunity Institute provides corporate education to bring out the best in people and organizations. For more information call (610) 566-8272 or visit

Reserve these dates for upcoming ROI Events: Sept. 10 & Oct. 1, 2014. Details coming soon.
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