Back in April, I asked you to share how my Leadership Maxims apply to you and your roles at Texas Children’s. I received so many thoughtful responses, all of which confirm that employees at Texas Children’s take Maxim No. 2 – Leadership Applies to Everyone – to heart.
I recently had the opportunity to visit with all respondents and thank them for sharing their leadership stories.
Since then, I have chosen five responses to highlight on my blog over the next few weeks. This is the first time I’ve featured guest bloggers and I’m really excited! Each blog will focus on one of the first five of my 10 Leadership Maxims:
- Leadership always influences or determines outcomes – not some of the time, but all of the time.
- Leadership applies to everyone.
- We lead in our professional lives and in our personal lives.
- We all should have our own definition of leadership.
- The key characteristics to look for when selecting people are a winning attitude and strong work ethic.
The first guest blogger – Daniel Osmand, a paralegal with our Legal Department – writes about Maxim No. 1: Leadership always influences or determines outcomes. I hope you enjoy learning his intimate thoughts on leadership and stay tuned for the guest blogs to come.
Maxim 1: Leadership always influences or determines outcomes – not some of the time, but all of the time
Leadership always influences or determines outcomes – not some of the time, but all of the time – and thank goodness it does! Today, I work for the top children’s hospital in America because of leadership choices my parents made years ago in war-torn former Yugoslavia.
The Yugoslav Wars were the backdrop of my childhood. Growing up in the former Yugoslavia, I was too young to understand that I was living through what would come to be known as Europe’s most devastating conflict since World War II. I was also too young to put into words what leadership meant, but I was not too young to watch true leadership happen. The leaders I’m speaking of are my parents. I watched them as they watched the news, talked to members of the community, and strategically planned the best time to flee our home.
I was too young to realize that as I fled with my mother, who showed leadership by taking her children toward an unknown future and saying goodbye to my father – who showed leadership in a different way by staying behind – that their actions determined the outcome of my future, and eventually the future of others at Texas Children’s. I was too young to realize that I would never go back home. I am old enough now to realize that I am home, both in the United States of America and at Texas Children’s Hospital.
As a refugee, I lived in Serbia and then in Dusseldorf, Germany, where my dad’s oldest brother lived. My mother wanted the best for us, so she enrolled us in the German school system where we had to learn the language before learning any other subject. My father was eventually reunited with us, and after the signing of the Peace Agreement that brought an end to the war, my parents were forced to make yet another decision that would determine my outcome. They had to decide to whether to go back to a destroyed community and trust that the very short-lived, fragile peace would continue under the same leadership and tensions that brought war, or to put their children’s safety first. The latter prevailed.
My mom applied to immigrate to the United States through the government’s Refugee Program. I remember arriving in Dallas where my family was taken to a rundown apartment complex infested with rodents. My dad led again as he made the decision to call a taxi to bring us to Houston where we lived in a one bedroom apartment with another family.
Watching my parents lead us through the immigration process with grace and perseverance sparked my interested in U.S. immigration law. Today, I coordinate all immigration-related matters in my role as a paralegal for Texas Children’s Legal Department. I have lived the process, faced war, and found hope in the United States because of my parents’ leadership. I now get to help others find that hope. I now get to lead.
I’d like to hear from you … how has good leadership influenced the way you work?
Take the leadership challenge, and score a spot at a Houston Texans event!
Over the next few weeks, Mark Wallace’s blog will feature guest bloggers who share how Mr. Wallace’s Leadership Maxims apply to them and their roles at Texas Children’s. Each blog post will pose a leadership question that you may respond to in the comments section.
Throughout November, the Corporate Communications team will randomly select 100 people from the comments to attend a private event with the Houston Texans, including a behind-the-scenes tour of NRG Stadium, an autograph session with two Houston Texans football players and photos with Texans cheerleaders. The event will be held on Tuesday, December 3.