Jim Collins’ Top Ten To-Dos for Young Leaders

If you consider yourself as an emerging leader and are serious about your learning and development, stop doing whatever you’re doing right now and for the next ten minutes, give me your undivided attention. Watch this YouTube clip below from the 47 minute mark for the next 10 minutes – where you’ll find nuggets of wisdom from Jim Collins. (If you have more time, watch the entire keynote address given by Jim Collins dedicated to the father of modern management Peter Drucker).

If you have ever read any work by Jim Collins, you know the next ten minutes will be of inestimable value. He gives brilliance advice to young, aspiring leaders. In fact, these top ten to-dos will help you set apart as a GREAT leader.

Jim Collins’ Advice to Emerging Leaders

  1. Build a Personal Board of Directors –those are selected not for their accomplishments but for their character
  2. Turn Off Your Electronic Gadget – effective people take time to THINK. Begin the discipline to put white space in your calender…Engage in the glorious pocket of quietude
  3. Work on Your Three Circles. To learn more about concept, click here.
  4. What is your questions-to-statements ratio and can you double it.
  5. If you woke tomorrow morning and discovered you inherited $20 million, and had discovered you also had terminal disease with 10 years to live, what would be on your stop-doing list?
  6. Start your stop-doing list.  How many have a to-do list?  How many have a stop-doing list?  Think about not what you’ve done, but what you’ve stopped doing. The real task is always clear what not to do.
  7. Unplug the opportunities that distract you.  Just because it is a once- in- a- lifetime opportunity doesn’t mean it is right for you. There will be always once- in- a- lifetime opportunity.
  8. Find something with which you have so much passion, that you are willing to endure the pain (Ed. Note: sounds like deliberate practice and effort).
  9. This is a great time of life to articulate the values you will not compromise.
  10. Prepare for a life that you are 1/3 through your work at age 65.

Jim Collins’ Top Ten Books

  1. Churchill, The Second World War
  2. Caro, Master of the Senate
  3. Goodwin, Team of Rivals
  4. Bernstein, Against the Gods: The Remarkable Story of Risk
  5. Lewis, Moneyball
  6. Homer, The Iliad
  7. Drucker, The Effective Executive
  8. Gardner, Self-Renewal
  9. Lewis, Assault on Lake Casitas
  10. Manchester, Goodbye Darkness