Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership Pt. 2: Actions by Anika Bagga

In my previous blog post, I stated the specific tasks I wanted to focus on for each commitment. My first commitment was to connect with people on a personal basis. Connecting with people on a personal basis makes connections more meaningful and trustworthy. For example, at one of the TC meetings, I found that one of the TC girls was involved in FBLA, a business club, that I was actively involved in as well. Now, every time we meet, we enjoy talking about the different projects and events we take-part in. Similarly, I hope to foster a personal connection with more people in my circles. I want to talk to people older than me and younger than me and work on finding common ground. I believe that connecting to people in the middle school and high school is easier, since there is bound to be something similar between clubs, activities, and school. I found that it was harder to connect with someone much younger or older. To overcome that, I put myself in their shoes and envisioned their values and priorities. This helped me lead a conversation that they were interested in, which also helped me connect with them easily.

My second commitment was to work on finding people’s stories and keep a journal to capture examples of exemplary performance. I think that a first step to being able to find peoples stories is to being a good observer, connecting with them on a personal basis, and asking the right questions. After hearing the person’s stories, I took down some notes in my orange notebook and wrote some follow up questions. Although I didn’t get very many opportunities to practice this skill, I did follow this process while watching a TED talk. I watched a ted talk on a girl living a zero waste life, in which she hand-made most of the products she used and the trash she created over three years could fit in a small mason jar! It was quite mind blowing, so I wrote down some notes and a few questions for her. I will continue working on my commitments by connecting personally with more people and reflecting on exemplary performance.