Romer: This is what leadership looks like
Forbes magazine compiled a list of 15 things that the most successful leaders do every day without thinking. Some are no-brainers, such as making decisions and communicating expectations. Others show how great leaders advocate for the qualities they exemplify; these include leading by example, challenging people to think, being accountable to others, investing in relationships, and asking questions and seeking council.
Here’s the thing: Leaders do not just lead their team, but they also inspire their others around them to aspire to do more to improve their lives. Leaders learn more about other things that can help them to be and do better, or learn things to improve their capabilities. Leaders seek to listen to learn, and to make an impact. In a business sense, leaders often do more that can help their organization and continue to innovate their products and services, and their process.
Leadership is sometimes viewed through an employer/employee relationship. Recognition of employees has long been a cornerstone of effective management and successful organizations. But today, as our public and private sectors continue to work on recovery and resiliency, recognition is about more than employees – it is about recognizing leaders who have stepped up to benefit the community, regardless of job title or tenure.
The coronavirus pandemic has placed extraordinary demands on leaders in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. There was not a predefined response plan to a global pandemic but rather community members stepping up to address issues facing the community while remaining flexible.
The term hero has been thrown about a lot over the past year and heroes rise to meet the occasion. Our community and others across the nation have rightly recognized our front-line responders, health care professionals, and others as heroes (and let’s hope this recognition has staying power once we are through with COVID).
The strength of our community lies in the number of leaders and hospitality heroes who have stepped up in meaningful ways to respond, react, and support the community. Our local leaders helped to foster collaboration and transparency – resulting in what might be termed “hospitality heroes.”
The Annual Vail Valley Success Awards seek to recognize organizations and individual professionals nominated by their peers who they thought deserved recognition for their efforts to take a leadership position, champion a cause, or better our community. This is what leadership looks like. Over 170 peer nominations that run the gamut from nonprofits to innovative companies to individuals with one common thread: leadership.
These organizations and individuals have excelled over the past year and it is important to acknowledge their hard work and dedication as among the best in the Vail Valley. These businesses and individuals play a significant role in driving the Vail Valley’s business community and adaptation during the most difficult year that most of us can remember. As author Simon Sinek says, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, you are a leader.”
The concept of inspiring others is a vital part of continuing leadership. Our community is in good hands, and as one past Success Award winner and selection committee member mentioned to me, “I had no idea how many people and how many organizations were doing such great things in our community, and I’m well connected and thought I was aware of most of what was going on.”
Our community is filled with leaders. Congratulations to all our nominees and hospitality heroes. We are blessed to have so many in Eagle County who exemplify what leadership looks like.
Chris Romer is president and CEO of the Vail Valley Partnership, the regional chamber of commerce. Learn more at www.vailvalleypartnership.com.