How Much Are You Like Christopher Columbus ?

36960882_thbColumbus Day is quickly approaching.

It’s the time of year when we remember and reflect on Christopher Columbus’ arrival to the America’s in October 1492 … did I just say 1492?

Stop and think for a minute what it would have been like ‘sailing the oceans blue’ 521 years ago … or think about what it would have been like to live during that time period. What was it like for your ancestors? Take another step and imagine what your city or neighborhood would have looked like 521 years ago … I find it fascinating!

I also find how his adventures changed (or shaped) civilizations fascinating.

Although the history is still very controversial, I thought President George H.W. Bush put the leadership of Christopher Columbus into unique perspective;

“Thus the story of Christopher Columbus reminds us that all fruitful exploration and discovery begins with a willingness to set one’s sails higher, to seek new horizons, and to follow wherever one’s imagination and experience might lead. It also reminds us that industry and labor are the foundation of learning and progress.”

My leadership tip for you this week is to take some time during this Columbus Day weekend to reflect on your leadership performance relative to the ‘Christopher Columbus story.’

Ask yourself these five questions:

What are the results of my efforts of exploration, experimentation and / or discovery?

Have I willingly set my sails (goals / ambitions) higher to strive for greater results?

What new horizons am I actively seeking?

What level of imagination and creativity am I mixing with my experience to achieve greater results?

What level of satisfaction do I have with my career growth and contributions to the success of the organization?

From the reading that I’ve done, it seems Christopher Columbus had many leadership characteristics. For me, his top five were: aggressive, progressive, persistent, creative and driven.

So, here’s one more question to ask yourself; who demonstrates these ‘Christopher Columbus like’ characteristics more effectively, your organization or your competition?

Yes, that’s what great coaches / facilitators/ leaders do … ask tough, great questions to make you think. Now you have to do something about it !

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