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10 Leadership Lessons 2023 Taught Me

2023 has affirmed for us that we simply cannot predict what will happen or what to expect in the future.

It’s been intense. And it’s been ugly. And it’s been beautiful. And it’s been heart-breaking. And it’s been joyful. It’s been a lot of things, frankly.

One thing we can probably all agree on is that we’ve learned a lot.

I think all leaders would admit this is true.

As a leader and as a leadership coach, I’ve been reflecting on what I’ve taken away this year about Leadership.

Not in a theoretical sense, but from being in the trenches and from being in conversations regularly with leaders, executive coaches, and organizations.

Here’s where I’m landing:

1. There are really visible generational differences on what good leadership looks like. This is showing up in the debates on remote work, communication norms, and strategies. As the middle generations, Gen X & Millennials can play a critical role in finding a Middle Path.

2. Modern Leadership is increasingly about creating movements of change skillfully, in the midst of non-stop change around us.

3. The most important skill for Modern Leaders is conversational. Entire futures are created in conversations.

4. The stories we embody shape our realities. The stories that most resonate with the youth are the ones that bring forth positive possibilities into the world.

5. High-performers are masters at pulsing energy.

6. Effective leaders listen to their bodies.

7. Being in flow is a more powerful way of Being than hustle. Hustle is about striving. Flow is about attracting and influencing momentum.

8. You can learn anything. But you do need to choose where to focus.

9. You can’t have it all. Own your choices and trade-offs.

10. Leaders deserve appreciation.

On that last point, most leaders I know are truly doing their best with the resources and tools they have. The demands on leaders today is higher than most people realize, and I think we sometimes forget that leaders are humans not superhumans.

So if a leader or peer comes to mind whom you really appreciate, TELL them! Let them know what you appreciate about them. You have no idea how much it will mean to them.

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