Personal Statement : My Personal Leadership Philosophy

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A supervisor once sat with me as we went over my annual performance evaluation and he said to me “not only do you have the qualities of a leader, but you also have charisma, Donna, and I don’t see that in people too often”. Honestly, at the time, I didn’t even know what that meant. Not only did I not know what charisma meant but I had no idea what that statement meant or should mean to me. Those words stuck with me though and I often wondered what he really meant and sometimes still do. However, I have been on a quest, probably for most of my life, not to be a leader, but a searcher for the main purpose of the entire process of developing my personal leadership philosophy, and in reflection on the impact of many leaders in which I have encountered over the last 20+ years of my adult life. I often think about the various elements of leadership in their separate contexts, but rarely do I take the time to align these things in the larger framework of my own leadership development. I have not, until lately, thoroughly contemplated what leadership means to me nor have I broken down my knowledge of myself, others, and personal practice of my leadership skills.

What is most important to me as a leader? Since leadership is such a broad and situational practice, I do not believe that there is one leadership style for everyone, but rather a compilation of each person’s upbringing, values, focus, internal and external environments, and more. Here, I attempt to capture
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