Becoming a Leader

In my final week at the University of Southern California, one of the most striking questions posed in my Warren Bennis Art of Leadership course was this: "Do talented people or directive vision create organizational change?"

Just shortly after walking across the graduation stage with this weighty question still ingrained in my mind, I received a call notifying me of the opportunity to be a Top 10 Finalist for The Adecco Group's CEO for One Month program. It seems as though, I'll finally gain an answer.

Now with the start of a the CEO for One Month bootcamp less than 24 hours away, I'm curious to hone in on the topic of organizational leadership and talent acquisition. From our two orientation sessions, I can already tell that The Adecco Group is pursuing an early investment in identifying, shaping, and building talent in young individuals from around the world.

I'm thrilled to get the opportunity to meet with members of Adecco's field operations and strategic corporate leaders to learn how each person or team might adopt a unique style of driving forward positive change while maintaining a sense of cohesion all under the Adecco name. I'm curious to see how these networks might rely upon one team member to team member, from branch to branch, and from country to country.

Just as important as meeting key leadership is meeting the people an organization serves. I'm grateful for the opportunity to meet key clients and learn what made The Adecco Group stand out as a long-term strategic relationship. I firmly believe that before the bottom line, business is about establishing personal relationships. I'm so excited to be able to see this in action.

Gifts from The Adecco Group for the CEO for One Month Program. Including an apron, yoga mat, notebook, drawstring bag, pen, recipe, and book

Finally, I'm grateful to be sharing this journey along with nine incredible thinkers and innovators. In our "Presentation Skills Workshop," I've seen how powerful a storytelling is in building connections. Throughout this upcoming week's bootcamp, I'm excited to see how we can develop our CEO potential through cheering one another on in a workout class, sharing our trials and triumphs in an cooking class, and creating synergies in simulations, workshops, and exciting challenges. I cannot wait to see how we work together as a team of diverse and talented individuals!

I would be remiss if I didn't confess my fear of potentially burning the lasagna in our upcoming cooking course. But in all seriousness, a question that I believe many leaders ask themself at some point in their career and one that sits heavily on my shoulders now is

"Do I have what it takes?"

At the end of the day, there are so many factors not within our control. However, there is one thing I am certain of: being true to myself through an open heart and an open mind. If there is just one piece of self-assurance I can take into my CEO for One Month bootcamp experience, it would be this:

"Leaders are made rather than born" - Warren Bennis

Thus far, the CEO for One Month program has offered a unique insight into the characteristics of different socially recognized leaders. From taking the Meyers Briggs personality assessment to hearing from a panel of former recipients of the CEO for One Month honorific, here's what I've concluded thus far:

1. CEO represents an unquenched sense of Curiosity; being savy and Enterprising; and always staying alert and Observant for solutions to innovation challenges

2. Leadership is not just about standing in the spotlight but about humbly serving those that encompass your organization

3. Authenticity cannot be faked. Your reaction to failure and crisis are as triumph and glory are just as -- if not more -- indicative of your leadership style

4. Not all leaders are extroverts. Sometimes introverted personalities can be extremely valuable in assessing details and rationality of decisions in contrast to more big vision approaches.

5. PEOPLE are the heart and soul of an organization. Without people you cannot implement a vision, accomplish tangible tasks, nor grow and adapt to trends.

Follow along my journey! I'm so grateful to embark on this learning opportunity and gain an insight on what it takes to create a thriving Fortune 500 company!

So follow along as I strap into this learning adventure of a lifetime. I am excited to explore what it takes to be a success CEO and a leader who can balance a dedicated focus on people with a vision for innovative change.

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