Leaders that make a Difference – Part 2.
Last week, I looked at three inspirational leaders who make a difference. The number of leaders that inspire me was too big to fit into just one post, so here is part 2.
Steve Jobs (1955- 2011)
Steve Jobs is almost always found on the list of leaders. His name is almost a cliché in this aspect, but that is with good reason. He is one of the most important people of the tech world, a genius who pioneered mobile and computing technology and made it cool to be a person updated with tech.
It can be safely said that if it weren’t for Jobs, we wouldn’t each be holding a smartphone in out hands. Chances are, you are reading this on a smartphone and you have Jobs to thank for it. Let’s be clear on this, he did not invent or come up with the concept of the smartphone, but rather tweaked it, put it an accessible, user friendly, beautifully crafted, shape and size that forced others makers to follow suit.
Lessons we can learn from Steve Jobs:
There are many things that we can learn from him, but uncompromising work ethic is the point of focus here. He did not give up until the products were fine tuned to perfection, something that every service provider or office worker should keep in mind.
While it has become something of a fad to scream equal rights and opportunity in social media and claim to be a rights activist, very few have had to actually face the level of persecution that Malala had to overcome in her life. She was targeted by one of the most feared terrorist organisations in the world, got shot in the face for defying them, recovered and continued her activism, and won the Nobel Peace Prize, all before she was 18!
Born and raised in rural Pakistan, she came from a part of the world where a girl going to school is not a challenge, it is a fight for life. At 14, she was sent threats from the terrorist organisation warning her to quit school, but she stood for her right to be educated.
People who make threats to kill children don’t normally go through with it, but the Taliban doesn’t play by common sense. She was shot on the 9th of October 2012 when a gunman stormed onto her school bus and shot at her.
Lessons we can learn from Malala:
Stand up for what is right, even in the face of insurmountable odds.
As far as leadership goes, Jack Welch pretty much wrote the book on it. Almost every quote you can think of when it comes to leadership, including the one used in the beginning of the Part 1 of this series about leaders and managers, is from Welch. He was one of the few people that insisted on getting the right people over the most qualified person for the job.
Lessons we can learn from Jack Welch:
“If you pick the right people and give them the opportunity to spread their wings and put compensation as a carrier behind it, you almost don’t have to manage them.”
That is one of the best pieces of entrepreneurial advice ever given.
What are your thoughts on these people?
Do you have your own inspirational leaders that you would stand behind?