Dan Kennedy Info Summit 2012 Livestream

Robin Sharma Leads Without A Title

Robin Sharma Leads Without A Title

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When it came time for Robin Sharma to carve out a life for
himself, becoming a lawyer seemed right. Although he
had loving parents, there was never abundance during his
childhood, and he was determined to find a way to prosper
as an adult. His life as a litigation lawyer provided money,
status and all the trappings of the success he envisioned. But
Sharma felt something was missing—that a vital part of him
was silently starving to death.

After serious thought, he discovered that in achieving his picture-perfect
life, he had sacrificed authenticity. “I had lost a clear sense
of the vision and values instilled in me as a child and was no longer
driven by any mission or passion,” he says. “I made the difficult decision
to pull back from the noise of my life and reinvent the way I was
living and leading.”

Sharma became a student of authentic leadership. He realized
his own success had been skin-deep, prompting a closer examination
of his inner motivations. “Dismayed by what I found, I chose to
redefine my core values, bringing them in line with what I knew to
be right,” he says. “I then started to understand the secrets of true
happiness and success.”

With Sharma’s own transformation came an urgency to share
his discoveries with others. His resulting work was an intriguing
fable titled The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari. But as an ordinary guy
from a small town, the only way Sharma could become a published
author was to self-publish his book. “My mother was my editor,
I printed copies of the book at Kinko’s, and my father sold the
finished product out of the trunk of his car to anyone who would
buy a copy.”

“You
cannot lead others until you have first learned to lead yourself.”

To market to a larger audience, Sharma persuaded some bookstore
owners to allow him to hold book signings. At one signing, he was
approached by a man who happened to be Ed Carson, the president
of major publishing company HarperCollins. Carson offered him a
deal on the spot. Since the book was published in 1997, 3 million
copies have sold in more than 50 countries. Numerous companies
such as Nike, FedEx, GE, IBM and Microsoft have used the teachings
introduced in Sharma’s book to help develop leaders in all levels of
their organizations.

Today, Sharma has written a total of 10 books, conducted
hundreds of seminars around the world and become known globally
as a leadership expert. Starting March 22, he will share his findings
and advice with SUCCESS readers through a six-week interactive
blog challenge titled Become the Leader You Were Meant to Be.

“Leadership is my oxygen,” Sharma says. “I have spent years as
a leadership coach to the very wealthy and have been able to get
behind the eyes of some of the world’s best, studying the minute
details of what makes a person great.”

His latest book, The Leader Who Had No Title, covers the following
four elements, which Sharma has found crucial to the new model
of leadership.

Great Leaders Need No Titles
Sharma says there are two types of leadership. The most familiar
kind comes with a title such as CEO or president. The second type is
the power of each individual to drive positive change wherever they
are. “Everyone is influencing the people around them one way or
another,” Sharma explains. “Those who grasp that reality understand
that their core beliefs will affect others, therefore those beliefs must
be intentionally considered and applied.”

Sharma offers an example of a man who installed carpet in his
office. “Burt installed carpets like Picasso painted pictures,” Sharma
says. Though not a CEO or president, Burt took pride in what he
did and led others to do their best by staying true to what he knew
was excellent. Ultimately, Burt raised the bar for all who met him.
“Burt illustrates a new model of leadership—the democratization of
leadership, or leadership being practiced everywhere, not just from
a corner office.”

Turbulent Times Breed Great Leaders
“We tend to run away from discomfort,” Sharma says. “But
fighting against turbulence is like fighting against the seasons.
Tough times are inevitable.” He teaches that
those who embrace change brought on by
difficult times grow stronger while operating
with the understanding that adversity
breeds opportunity.

Effective Leaders Build
Relationships
He contends that deeper relationships lead to
stronger leadership. “For instance, if a company
leader focuses only on having a great product
but ignores the people delivering that product,
the quality of the experience to the customer is
usually less than excellent,” Sharma says.

Sharma recalls a favorite childhood memory
as an example of the importance of connecting
with others. He was in Los Angeles with his
parents during a Christmas holiday where
they happened to see Muhammad Ali. Sharma
stopped Ali and asked if he would pose for a
photo with him and his family. Ali happily
obliged, and his simple gesture of kindness
made an impact on the young Sharma. “It is
imperative that we recognize our need for others
in order to be successful,” he says.

The Lost Piece of the
Leadership Puzzle
To become a great leader, one must first
become a great person, Sharma says. “You
cannot lead others until you have fi rst learned
to lead yourself. Many individuals have become
victims of their circumstances rather than
overcoming them, which leads to an addiction
to excuses.”

At a crucial juncture in life, Sharma chose to learn from those who had demonstrated
meaningful leadership skills. Now he offers the same opportunity to anyone desiring to
be successful in leadership and in life.

During his blog challenge, Sharma will offer practical ways to live a life of excellence
and will expound on the principles taught in his latest book. His view from both sides of
success gives Sharma a unique perspective and the ability to assist others in developing
authentic, enduring success. To register and participate, go to blog.SUCCESS.com.

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