Leaders to Leader

Lessons from the Great American Leaders & How They Apply Now

Do You Believe in Yourself?

with 5 comments

Do you believe in yourself, your abilities and possess the confidence to succeed in life? It is impossible to develop a high degree of confidence without first having a strong sense of self-belief. This implies knowing without a doubt that you can do it, no matter what you realistically set your mind to do.  “Henry Ford had tremendous self-belief and he constantly preached on it. He would hire workers [who] didn’t know [the] understand the meaning of impossible and would keep pushing the limits of their imagination.” [1]

Estée Lauder (left)

Without a strong sense of self-belief, Estée Lauder (Estée Lauder) would never have even taken her first steps forward. “A tireless believer in herself, in her wares, and in hard work, Lauder haunted a purchasing agent at Saks Fifth Avenue, New York’s classy department store, until she landed a small order. From there, she staked out her ever larger, ever more laden counters in the nation’s leading emporiums.” [2]

Self-belief fuels a strong sense of optimism. Jeff Bezos (Amazon) observed: “Optimism is essential when trying to do anything difficult because difficult things often take a long time. That optimism can carry you through the various stages as the long term unfolds. And it’s the long term that matters.” [3]

Self-belief and optimism provide effective leaders the means to overcome adversity and failure, as was exhibited by John Chambers (Cisco) when he saw his revenues collapse. “Cisco executives say Chambers always believed that Cisco would come out of the bust stronger. ‘We’re extremely optimistic that John Chambers will see to the success of all of us,’ says Mona Hudak, a Cisco manager. ‘We really are trying to build a great company that’s built to last,’ Chambers says.” [4]

Theodore Vail (AT&T) originally left AT&T after the initial investors did not concur with his vision of the company. After J.P. Morgan (J.P. Morgan Bank) acquired AT&T, Vail was brought back to implement his vision. “Vail’s determination and his confidence in the telephone company’s future were unshaken by the fact that the money market was dangerously sagging and recession loomed ahead.

“’When Mr. Vail came back to the telephone company as president,’ an executive at the Chicago associated company later recalled, ‘telephone men and the public generally recognized that somebody was there who not only knew the telephone business, but the world’s business, and it restored confidence.’ Vail was more than just a ‘telephone man;’ he was a knowledgeable entrepreneur, in his 20-year absence from the company, his successful business ventures had made him a millionaire several times over.” [5]

[1] Henry Ford – Leadership Case Study (http://www.leadership-with-you.com)

[2] Guzzardi Jr. Walter, The U.S. Business Hall of Fame (Fortune Magazine, March 14, 1988)

[3] Walker, Rob, Jeff Bezos Amazon.com – America’s 25 Most Fascinating Entrepreneurs (Inc. Magazine, April 1, 2004)

[4] Maney Kevin, Chambers, Cisco Born Again (USA Today, January 21, 2004)

[5] Fry Annette R., Man of Decision (Bell Telephone Magazine, March-April 1975)

Excerpt: Great! What Makes Leaders Great, What They Did, How They Did It and What You Can Learn From It (Majorium Business Press, 2011)

If you would like to learn more about the self-belief and confidence of the great American leaders through their own inspiring words and stories, refer to Great! What Makes Leaders Great: What They Did, How They Did It and What You Can Learn From It. It illustrates how great leaders built great companies, and how you can apply the strategies, concepts and techniques that they pioneered to improve your own leadership skills. Click here to learn more.

Copyright © 2011 Timothy F. Bednarz All Rights Reserved

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Written by Timothy F. Bednarz, Ph.D.

July 26, 2011 at 10:14 am

5 Responses

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  1. Good website! I truly love how it is easy on my eyes and the data are well written. I am wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your feed which must do the trick! Have a great day! “Reputation is what other people know about you. Honor is what you know about yourself.” by Lois McMaster Bujold.

    Saturnina Pebsworth

    August 1, 2011 at 1:49 pm

  2. Ya, it’s about perception.
    Regards
    Rahul Gandhi
    http://pressbrief.blog.co.uk/

    Rahul Gandhi

    September 14, 2011 at 6:29 am

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    Elektrische Zahnbuerste

    December 8, 2011 at 3:16 am

  4. […] Related: Do You Believe in Yourself? […]

  5. […] Do You Believe in Yourself? […]


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