Gordon Tootoosis once said that “Leadership is about submission to duty. Not elevation to power”

I love this sentiment. I’ve been saving great quotes for a few years. I refer to them often when I’m in need of a reminder, or when I’m coaching. I’ve made it one of my leadership goals to collect great and inspiring quotes. They inspire me to see the big picture, and like Gordon stated, leadership is about submission. So, they’re also a reminder that points me to my values.

I think leaving a legacy in business, or in anything really is about who we are as much as what we’ve done. Firstly, it’s important for me to know my values and secondly, to lead from them. If I’m to be successful in leaving a legacy, it will be important for those around me to know my values. Not by any statement I may make, but by demonstration.

Stephen Covey stated, “There are three constants in life…change, choice and principles.”

As leaders, we must have clarity and focus on these 3 things. How we lead, and who we are, will determine if we’re even remembered let alone leaving a legacy.

General Norman Schwarzkopf said that “Leadership is a combination of strategy and character. If you must be without one, be without the strategy.”

Character and values are the essential ingredients for leaving a legacy.

Whatever legacy we create will be judged by others. So, I ask myself, what would others say about my values, and my character? Would others say I have a posture of submission to the office I hold? 

Our hope as leaders who want to leave a legacy is to act with principles based on our values. To surround ourselves with team members of strong character, and to develop these people as we move aligned with corporate mission towards success together. If we can do this, the legacy will take care of itself.

“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

Warren Peters (President of Atlas Industries)