This blog post is part of the 2016 Next Top Credit Union Executive competition originally posted September 14, 2016.

Everyone has the potential and capacity to be leaders in all their roles in life: at home, in the community, and at work. A leader with a centered presence thinks and acts effectively in a variety of circumstances and challenges. A centered leader acts more decisively, collaborates with others to achieve goals, and has a wide range of communication practices, such as deep listening and speaking from the heart to the issues and concerns of his or her listeners.

The Self that you are is your fundamental power as a leader. How you present yourself in your relationships and connections with others is a direct reflection of who you are as a person. Forward-leaning people have those same distinctions in how they orient themselves in conversation and action.  They may rush into problem solving and miss important details or lack self-care. People who lean back and away have those same distinctions in their orientations. These distinctions are much more than body language; they are your leadership presence, your centered presence that compels, motivates, and mobilizes others into action.

A centered leader has a centered, well-grounded body with shoulders over hips, knees, and ankles and is connected to a purpose united with a greater good in mind. Your Self from within, as a compelling leader, is integrous with your external self: how you comport yourself in your conversations and actions using your gifts and talents and aligning with your passion and commitment.

The Next Top Credit Union Exec (NTCUE) has a strong sense of Self. The NTCUE acknowledges and honors their gifts and talents and aligns them with purposeful action every day. The NTCUE creates a project that showcases their passion, gifts, and talents in a purposeful and intentional fashion. The NTCUE accesses wisdom and makes the right and often harder choice. The NTCUE is vulnerable and compassionate and acts with courage in the face of obstacles. The NTCUE shares the concerns of others yet, at the same time, honors their own concerns. The NTCUE takes a stand for dignity and takes appropriate action to fulfill promises. The NTCUE makes powerful requests of others for support and makes meaningful offers to others.

To be a compelling leader, you must first be compelling to yourself and honor your gifts, talents, and passion for what is important in life. To be compelling requires being passionate and practicing being a centered and grounded presence.

Deedee Myers, Ph.D., MSC, PCC
DDJ Myers, Ltd.

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