by Leona Dalavai Scott
Editor, AutoInc. Magazine
Former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani delivered the keynote address at the International Autobody Congress and Exposition's (NACE) general session November 3, inspiring attendees with his key principles of leadership.
Giuliani, who managed the city of New York during the crisis and aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, engaged collision repairers with his brand of humor - often poking fun at New Yorkers - and relating his many years of leadership experience.
During his one-hour address, Giuliani shared six principles of leadership that every leader must exhibit to be successful. They are:
1) Vision - "First, you have to be a person of conviction who leads with a vision of the future," Giuliani said. He cited the leadership examples of Ronald Reagan and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. who he said were two men of vision who pursued their goals with focus and determination.
2) Positive attitude - "To be a leader, you have got to have a positive attitude," Giuliani said, warning that it is difficult to be an effective leader when you're negative all the time.
3) Courage - Next, Giuliani emphasized the importance of courage during crises. "Courage can be defined as the management of fear," he said, relating several examples of New York City firefighters and policemen who demonstrated exemplary courage during the 2001 terrorist attacks and during his years as mayor.
4) Preparation - Preparation is crucial, Giuliani said, to your success as a leader. He said that during the terrorist attacks, his game plan for dealing with that crisis was the result of individual plans that the city had in place. He was able to act quickly to deal with the situation because he was prepared.
5) Know your weaknesses - An important principle that many leaders overlook, Giuliani said, is knowing their weaknesses. Knowing one's weaknesses is helpful when building a team that is strong in areas that the leader may be lacking. "No one achieves anything in life without other people," he said, adding that teamwork is crucial to carrying out the vision and goals of an organization.
6) Communication - Finally, Giuliani said that key to being a strong leader is effectively communicating your message to others. "You can do this well by following the other five principles," he added.