“What does it mean to you, to have produced 100 meetings of your breakfast series?” my friend Darin Lynch asked. He’s the CEO of Irish Titan, a sponsor and a past speaker.
“Good leaders are so generous with their time,” was my first thought. In planning 100 breakfasts over 13 years, I’ve only had 3 leaders decline the invitation to speak at the Good Leadership Breakfast. That’s amazing! And for this year, we’re especially grateful to have Bill George – best selling author, Harvard educator and former CEO of Medtronic – as our guest speaker at our 100th episode celebration.
Better yet, 54 of the past 87 speakers will be in attendance. That makes me really happy.
“What have you learned about good leadership, by interviewing all of those leaders?” asked my colleague Kevin Sensenig.
There are three simple and obvious learnings:
1) There’s no straight line – the goodness journey of every speaker journey has been a winding path, with lots of twists and turns. Good leaders are open to seeing set-backs and surprises as “pivot points” that bounced them in a new direction that turned out to be good.
2) Goodness “pays” when we help others thrive – Goodness is everywhere, in everyone. Good leaders know how to find the goodness in people, and help that goodness grow.
3) Nothing significant ever happens alone – every speaker talked about the people who lifted them to the next level in their careers…no one said they lifted themselves up by their boot straps. Rather, they talked about their teams. And they gave sincere credit to the people along their journey who saw something in them, that they didn’t see in themselves.
“Do you have any regrets?” a colleague asked. “There’s only one,” I said sheepishly. “I wish we could have an unlimited number of tickets to the 100th breakfast.” We’re already over sold, and we cannot accept any more ticket requests. It’s exciting, and also hard to shut off ticket sales.
We will have a summary video, and I will write about the insights we gather from Bill George. And then we’ll start working on the next 100, by hosting Michele Havens, President of the West Region of Northern Trust, on March 24, 2023.