A lesson that we all tend to forget and overlook in regards to leadership:

You don’t always have to follow what people did before you.

That should be simple right? But if you look at some examples, lots of people tend to follow in the footsteps of those before them. So maybe it’s not so easy…

An example of innovative leadership that does align with the bold statement above is Jenny Sanford the first lady of South Carolina and the wife of Mark Sanford. For those of you who haven’t heard about Mark Sanford yet, he’s the latest governor who has admitted to having an affair.

When Jenny Sanford didn’t show up at her husband’s press conference where he admitted to having an affair, questions started popping up. When isn’t the first lady standing beside her husband at his press conference like Hilary Clinton and Elizabeth Edwards did?

Because she decided to issue her own statement.

She could have followed the many great women who had been in this situation before her, and stood by her man. However, she went out of the box and defied the norm.

She was going up against all odds, and most assumed that she would step in line just like any other political lady has done in the past. Ruth Marcus of the Washington Post didn’t think she would have the spine to stick up for herself.

But with a degree in finance from Georgetown and the old Vice President of Mergers and Acquisitions at the investment banking firm Lazard on Wall Street, she has a tough spine and strong leadership communication skills.

From her decision to defy the norm, she is being called a “Role Model” from the Washington Post, a “New Political Paradigm” from CNN, and people are even pushing for her to run for governor on “The Kudlow Report“!

So what can we take away from this to improve our leadership skills. . .

  • You have the choice to decide what you want to do, don’t let the actions of the past leaders control your actions.
  • Be confident in yourself. You are Remarkable – and you have the ability to make the right decision. You CAN do it!
  • Act with strength and integrity.

Use Innovative Leadership, if there is a way you think you should handle a situation the way no one has done before go for it! Have it planned out and be confident in your decision.

Guest post by Kim, Not Your Ordinary Intern

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