Over the holidays, I received the gift of Gretchen Rubin’s ‘A Happier 2018’ page-a-day calendar from a good friend. Gretchen’s focus is exploring happiness and good habits; cultivating good habits to induce more happiness. The January 3rd calendar page challenges readers to find their ‘patron saints’. In more casual, rather than religious, terms, a ‘patron saint’ is a person who serves as a particular leader or example.

That passage got me thinking about a woman I had the pleasure of knowing and working with a number of years ago. When I think of especially effective leadership, I think of her as my ‘patron saint’.

She was courageous and not afraid to challenge the status quo and push the boundaries to make things better. Because of these qualities and many others, she knew how to get the most out of people; how to enable the full potential in others. She consistently made choices to inspire, motivate, set direction, and make a difference in the lives of others.

Our pattern of choices becomes a habit, as with happiness so it is with leadership.

Think about particularly effective leaders you have known, what choices do they make consistently, what habits do they cultivate?

We tend to be heavily influenced by the types of leaders we are able to observe and learn from.

Who is your ‘patron saint’ of effective leadership?