Over the course of a career, experience and knowledge play an important role in professional development and overall success. However, a major factor in a leader’s acumen is advice they receive from peers, employers, and mentors.
In September, we asked our readers what’s the best piece of advice they’ve ever received, and as you can imagine, the answers were across the board.
One respondent explained great leaders take the well-being of others into consideration:
“The CEO of our company once quoted Benjamin Franklin when explaining why it’s better to be a good leader than a good manager. “Do well by doing good.” He said to use those words to help guide our own actions, our company’s decision making, and the actions of our employees. He wanted us to put the well-being of our clients above everything else and he said the business will thrive and survive any obstacle.”
Another Refresh Leadership reader said sometimes you have to go against bad advice you receive:
“Early in my career, had a colleague give me some negative advice that I have always gone against and has assisted me in excelling at what I do. Had just finished training a mechanic on how to perform a specific task following the proper step-by-step work method, and the colleague approached me and said ‘never show them everything you know or they will replace you one day.’ I have always proceeded to share all that I know so that when the day comes that they replace me, I can always walk away knowing that it is being done correctly.”
Making mistakes is part of the process. This reader received this advice and never looked back:
“Don’t be afraid to make mistakes. We learn from them. Fix them and move on. ‘If you aren’t making mistakes, you aren’t making decisions. If you aren’t making decisions, what am I paying you for?’ Now, closer to the end of my career than the beginning, I can say that I am really smart because I have made a lot of mistakes, and I am really good at solving problems and fixing things! The good news is I don’t make as many mistakes now due to my experiences. Don’t fear the mistakes!”
Here are a few other great nuggets of advice from our readers:
- Listen … Learn … then Lead.
- Don’t sacrifice your deeply held beliefs for a job.
- Ego and Awareness cannot coexist
- Be engaged with, be kind to, get to know, and learn from everyone
And for more leadership advice, check out our series “Practical Tips for New Leaders.” Here are a few of the articles that can help elevate your skills:
- Practical Tips for New Leaders: Building a Team
- Practical Tips for New Leaders: Employee Development
- Practical Tips for New Leaders: Empathy
- Practical Tips for New Leaders: Communication
How has advice from others helped you succeed? What have you done to seek out mentorship in your career? Let us know in the comments section below!