10 Life & Leadership Lessons From My Mother

In a (belated) homage to Mothers Day, and since we are a Mother/Daughter owned business, I thought it would be appropriate to share some valuable life & leadership lessons I've learned while working with my mother.  I wrote a longer, more generalized, list a few years back that includes really profound nuggets of wisdom such as "never fly in jeans" and "dessert is always a good idea, but you have to share with the cat". 

(What? We like cats, and they like ice-cream. Don't be selfish.)

Anyway. I'll keep this list on topic.

My mom is a smart, driven, lady with many accomplishments (that I won't delve into much detail on because she would get mad at me). She's an understated powerhouse of a person who has, throughout her 26 year career as an Army Officer, made a giant impact on those she led and worked with. I've heard many people fondly describe her leadership style as "walking quietly with a big stick". Now, at scDataCom, we call it "Honeybadgering".

In 2014, just when she thought she was going to get comfortably bored in retirement, I talked her into onboarding at scDataCom instead.  Working alongside her has afforded me an unique view of professional and personal accomplishments that, as a kid, I thought were "normal".  Now that I am working beside her - learning from her, and trying to keep pace with her - I've realized that my Mother's "normal" is fairly exceptional. 

Compiled below are some lessons I've learned from my mother. Following them will ensure success in business, leadership roles, life and most human interactions. Generally speaking.

10 Lessons from My Mother

1.     You must require and expect respect, but also earn and deserve it.

2.     Every office should have a candy bowl. At least one.

3.     Take responsibility and accountability for your own success and happiness.

4.     “Water off a ducks back” and “MYOB (mind your own business)” will continue to be shockingly applicable beyond the playground and into adulthood. You do you.

5.     Be patient and try to be kind.

6.     People learn from failure. Let them.

7.     There is strength in silence – when you’ve made your point, stop talking.

8.     Real productivity means exercise before 6AM.

9.     Do, don’t delegate.

10.  Yes, you can.