Greetings, readers, and happy almost (depending on when this gets posted) March. Honestly, where does the time go? Valentine’s Day decorations are out and Saint Patrick’s Day and Easter decorations are up and overwhelming stores. However, before the spring holidays come into full swing, I would like to share with you a book that was recently brought up through work, called Heroic Leadership by Chris Lowney. In a nutshell, it is a book that teaches the four main Jesuit leadership principles that have ensured the Society’s success for the past 450-ish years. Now, I know very well that Saint Vincent is a Benedictine school, but hear me out here. Each religious order brings its own positive thing to the world, and despite the Benedictines and Jesuits being very different, they both are very good at what they do.
Jesuits, a more service-oriented order, pride themselves with “living with one foot raised.” What does this mean and how does this even apply to us today? Well, Jesuits have to be ready to move anywhere and do anything at a moment’s notice, while at the same time, accepting the challenge with a unique indifference. Even though this may sound like a tall order, I think that in the long run this mindset is truly a good way to approach and deal with change … (TBD if I can successfully implement this mantra, but it is now a new goal!)
Along with this ideal on how to live life and deal with chronic change, the Jesuits have a revolutionary notion that we are all leaders, and we are leading all of the time. To take a quote from The Princess Bride, “Inconceivable!” We already have so much influence to change things for the better, so how can we not move forward in a positive direction with this revelation? In addition to this statement, Lowney also imparts that there are four pillars of Jesuit leadership which are included in this book:
- Self-awareness – understand strengths, weaknesses, values, worldviews
- Ingenuity – innovate and adapt to embrace a changing world
- Love – engage others with a positive, loving attitude
- Heroism – energize the self and others through heroic ambitions
Isn’t it encouraging that we don’t have to memorize various laws of leadership or different qualities of what deemed leaders possess? Also, especially with the pace at which life changes and the general craziness of the world that we live in, any helpful tips of how to move “forward, always forward, everywhere forward” is welcome (Boniface Wimmer with the clutch encouragement). Whether it is adapting to different changes in college, getting ready for graduation, or moving into a new job, the advice that this book offers is positive and uplifting. The buy-in seems simple enough and the rewards appear plentiful as there are many examples of Jesuits who have changed the world that fill the pages.
So why am I telling you about the contents of Heroic Leadership? Honestly, the main reason is because I was really moved by this book and wanted to share the wealth of knowledge it imparted. Also, learning that we are already leaders is an intriguing and amazing concept to me. This is so exciting – we have all this leadership power within our grasp and can fully come to embrace our potential with some guidance!
2015-2016 Hockey Marketing Team