Henry Givray is President and CEO of SmithBucklin Corporation. SmithBucklin is the world’s largest association management and professional services company. Mr. Givray has several decades of leadership experience and is a highly sought after expert on leadership. Since 2002, under Givray’s leadership, SmithBucklin has shattered every performance record in the company’s history.
Mr. Givray spoke to student entrepreneurs at the 2012 Collegiate Entrepreneurs’ Organization(CEO) National Conference in Chicago on November 1st. Students were engaged and inspired by Givray’s thoughts and messages. The following are 4 takeaways from his talk:
“Leadership is recession proof”
Leadership is always important, and possibly even more important in tough times. We should all strive to be better leaders and to persevere through recessions, depressions, and even tragedies. It is through these tough times that we recognize great leadership and great leaders are born. The next time you are facing a challenge, just know that others may be looking at you and that it is more important than ever to lead.
“Inspiration is different from motivation. Inspiration comes from the heart – willingly and naturally”
Motivation can be easy to come by, whether you are motivated by money, power, sex, fear, and/or fame. Inspiration only comes from something truly special – something that affects you from within and is more powerful than external motivation.
As it applies to leadership; you can motivate people in negative ways such as fear, but if you can inspire people who look up to you, they will receive a much greater source of motivation. Seek to not only motivate others, but to inspire them through your words and more importantly, your actions.
“During trying times a leader’s optimism and courage lifts spirits, gives hope and builds strength in others”
When you get down and things seems to only get worse, do you crack under pressure and take it out on others, or do you still see hope in the situation and search for a better outcome? Leaders have to stay positive, otherwise those who follow lose hope and will look for something else to believe in.
“Character is the sum total of your values and beliefs reflected in your behaviors, actions, decisions and choices”
Not all people who are designated as ‘leaders’ have high moral character. Character is not only how someone is perceived or the goodwill that is projected through media, it encompasses all aspects of one’s life.
If you strive to become a leader and lead others, you must emulate the leader you wish to be in all aspects of life, from your words, to your actions and decisions.
Henry Givray is a great role model of what a leader should be and how he or she should inspire others. A leader is someone who inspires and leads not only when at work, but in all aspects of their lives. Leaders step up in trying times and keep optimism even in times of tragedy.
*Quotes from Henry Givray in this article were all taken from his keynote address at the 2012 CEO National Conference in Chicago on November 1, 2012.