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It’s Not The Founder, It’s The Leadership Strategy That Matters

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Even though he almost fired me after 2 weeks…

… my leadership style came from a guy named Darcy.

I was 21 years old, and just got a contract position with a company in Fort McMurray, Alberta working on the tech team at Syncrude.

Somehow I was hired even though the people reporting to me were 10 years older.

Darcy gave me 2 weeks to “figure it out.”

Over the next two years I would learn everything I know today on how to lead.

I had an incredible mentor in Darcy, and it wasn’t till years later when I started my first “real company” that I truly appreciated the magnitude of what I had learned.

One of the most enduring and powerful lessons I learned was the 4 Levels of Leadership.

The 3rd level is the most powerful.

The 2nd level is the reason so many startups in Silicon Valley have such high turn over.

Master the 4th level and you can change the world.

Here are the 4 levels:

  1. Title
  2. Trader
  3. Servant
  4. Spiritual

What I loved most about working with Darcy was his hunger for improvement, and for getting suggestions from ALL levels of the team.

He’d eagerly ask interns for their thoughts on solving major company wide problems, and take them into consideration.

If he moved forward on any of them, he’d give them credit even though I knew he had already discussed that solution with me.

He was a master at leading and inspiring the team, and I’ll be forever grateful for getting a chance to learn from the very best at such a young age.

Be sure to honour your teachers, and leave a comment with the name, company and short story of how you were taught an incredible lesson on leadership from one of your past mentors.

At the core of all human connection is the need to teach and lead.

I hope I can inspire you all to operate from a level 3 going forward!



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