Do you ever find yourself questioning whether you have what it takes to be a leader? I used to. Until I went through KWSM’s Leadership Program, I experienced feelings of self-doubt in this area that many people can relate to.
Thankfully, this program began at a time when I was ready to confront those doubts and ultimately transform my perspective. From practicing strategic decision-making to understanding the ins and outs of communication best practices, I can confidently say that KWSM’s Leadership Program made a huge impact on my professional and personal development.
About KWSM’s Leadership Program
A few years ago, KWSM’s CEO and President, Katie Wagner, created this 12-week leadership program to encourage employees to dig a little deeper into their leadership skills and grow them. First off, the feeling goes beyond appreciation to work in an environment where the leaders of the agency put us on the right track to get in touch with ourselves at this level. It is common for professional growth to be prioritized in the workplace, but at KWSM, Katie equally prioritizes personal growth, as the two are divinely connected and of equal importance.
Each of Katie’s twelve leadership lessons focuses on a different topic based on her research into what truly matters for evolving leaders. Twice a year, she recruits a small group of 3-4 employees to participate in the program so that the experience is more personal and direct. This allows the sessions to not only hold educational value, but there was also value in our small group sharing personal experiences and engaging with one another. We all felt heard, understood, and supported throughout the 1.5-hour weekly sessions. Thanks to the KWSM Leadership Program, I also feel a closer connection to two of my teammates that reside in different states.
Speak it into Existence
Katie’s lessons stem from psychological studies and put into perspective what it means to be a great leader. For instance, during our first session, we were asked to create a vision statement for where we’d like to see ourselves in a year. This statement is something we would read to ourselves every day, with the intention of speaking it into existence. Studies indicate that the practice of verbally declaring a future where you have met your goals leads us to believe in ourselves and our abilities. I followed this practice and feel that my words of affirmation have become my reality.
Chase Your Goals, and Don’t Give Up
Have you ever created a list of goals? I’ve always had goals that I would like to achieve in areas of my life but never wrote them down until Katie asked us to do so. One of our sessions covered the importance of goal setting, supported by the psychology and science of it.
Katie shared this with us:
Forbes did a study about goals by testing students in the Harvard MBA program.
The study asked students if they had clear, written goals for their futures:
- Only 3% of the students had written goals and plans
- 13% had goals but hadn’t written them down anywhere
- 84% had no goals at all
After 10 years, the group of students was again interviewed:
- The 13% of the class who had goals but didn’t write them down earned twice the amount as the 84% who had no goals.
- The 3% who had written goals were earning an average of 10 times more than the other 97% of their classmates!
This stood out to me because I aspire to continue growing and avoid feeling stagnant. I put a lot of thought into what I strive to achieve in these areas of my life: work, career, leadership, personal, and relationships. My present self looks at my goals list weekly to hold myself accountable, and I’m feeling more fulfilled by the week.
Here’s my Leadership Vision Statement: I am confident in my ability as a leader to help lead my team to success. I will share my experiences, wins, and failures with others to positively influence their experience. I am a supportive asset to the team that will help others reach their goals. I’m continuing to learn and share something new every day. My words are powerful and valuable, providing me with the tools to reach my higher self.
In the present moment, I feel that my words of affirmation have become my reality.
I am beyond grateful for KWSM’s Leadership Program as it helped me grow my confidence and understand that I want to set an example for others and ultimately help them grow in this area.
Developing the next generation of leaders is the top challenge for 55% of CEOs.
At KWSM, we take leadership development seriously, and think that team members at every level of the agency can be leaders. Are you interested in joining the KWSM team?
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