No Time to Make Leadership Happen? Start Small

“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.”

~ Robert Collier

No Time to Make Leadership Happen? Start Small

By Angie Morgan and Courtney Lynch

Your head is down. Your to do-list is long. You need to cross off as many items on your list as you can so you can leave your desk by 5:00 tonight.

There is no time for extras in your day: lunch with colleagues, agenda-less banter, reaching out to your mentor, dedicating effort to big-ticket items that attach to your vision, etc. You just don’t have the time.

The problem is that this isn’t one of those rare office occurrences; rather, this is your work routine. Heck, this is your life. You are overworked and overscheduled; the opportunity to provide leadership to others is minimal.

If this description sounds like you, bring leadership back into your life by starting small:

  • Don’t start your conversations with the phrase “Oh my gosh, I’m so busy…” Even if you are, what it communicates to others is that you have no time to solve problems or to be a resource.
  • Don’t over-commit yourself. Try to find some whitespace in your calendar, preferably in the morning, where you can use that time to focus outward. As we are most productive in the morning, try carving out space to reach out to clients/colleagues/friends to share some gratitude and appreciation for their efforts.
  • Try to say “no” – no to excessive meetings, no to additional responsibilities, no to volunteer requests. And, if you feel like you can’t say “no,” challenge yourself to ask why you feel this way. If appropriate, reach out to your manager to have a conversation about true priorities.
  • Watch your credibility. The busier we are, the greater the possibility that we will over-promise and under-deliver. Guard your say-do gap (the space between your actions and your words); make sure it is as small as possible.

This article was provided courtesy of Lead Star – a premiere leadership development firm. You can learn more about leadership by visiting their website at


Take time right now to clear space on your calendar to work on your goals every day this week. Discipline is a key part of the process. What have you found to be most helpful in getting into and staying in action on your goals? Please share in the comments area below.