Over the last several months, we members of the 2007 class of Leadership Erie County have been studying our Erie County community and the issues that affect everyone who works and lives here. We have met and exchanged ideas with community leaders in such areas as business, industry, education, law enforcement, justice system, economic development and healthcare to name a few. We have done this to become more in-tune with those in leadership positions to learn more about our community and ourselves.
Throughout the process we have been encouraged to develop and grow our leadership styles in areas most passionate to us. We have learned that, whether you are managing a team at work, captaining your sports team or leading a major corporation, your leadership style is crucial to your success. Good leaders are continually working and studying to improve their leadership skills.
Leadership is defined as the ability of an individual to set an example for others and lead from the front. It is an attitude that influences the environment around us. Leadership directly affects service, satisfaction, motivation, and sustainability.
The Leadership Erie County approach utilizes a focused curriculum coupled with the use of the community as a classroom to expose us to many different leadership styles. All along the way we have been challenged to cultivate and refine our own style to make a difference in the quality of life throughout our community.
As the year comes to a close, we glance back at our coursework, and remind ourselves of the mission we have undertaken. We take stock in the fact that we have grown personally and developed respect for one another because of our diverse backgrounds, professions and viewpoints. We know leadership is not talk, it's action.
We look forward with enthusiasm and excitement to reaching out for responsibility--joining an organization, making a contribution, volunteering; because leaders don't start at the top, they work hard and give a lot of themselves first!
Victoria Oldham, Leadership Erie County, Class of 2007
Ashley Insurance Group