The Amazing Adventure of a High Performance Leadership Project

The High Performance Leadership (HPL) project is designed to give Toastmaster members an opportunity to practice their leadership skills that they have acquired through Toastmasters.  Initially, it shows the leader where s/he lies in the spectrum of leadership skills then with the help of the Guidance Committee and the Action Committee conducts the HPL project in performing an HPL project, the journey is so much valuable than the destination.

I appreciated the opportunity to work on the HPL project in 2017.   My project was to Co-Chair the Registration for the District Fall Conference.

Though the project seemed simple, I encountered challenges but I applied all six dimensions of service leadership to my HPL project.  I learned that to lead is to serve.  I had never thought that the six dimensions of service leadership – Vision and Values, Direction, Persuasion, Support, Development and Appreciation could be applied to my project and I learned how to be a more effective leader.

Here are some lessons that I learned from the HPL project:

  1. Prepare to serve – Direction had been provided to the team members, however, I learned to support and serve the team, step in to help any time when the team members need me. I must know my role, prepare to help and find out how to help.
  2. Be open-minded – I learned to listen to suggestions, ideas and opinions from my co-chair, I learned to be flexible to original plan and might have taken alternatives where needed. When Plan A did not work, I would take Plan B or other alternatives which would turn out better results for the project.
  3. Develop the team members – I learned to provide opportunity and flexibility for the team members to perform the required tasks. This would help to develop their communication and leadership skills.
  4. Support and appreciation to the team – I learned that a service leader must work well with team members, showing the support and appreciation to the team members for the work completed. Everybody likes to be appreciated for what they have done.   
  5. Feedbacks from the team members – I requested the constructive feedbacks from the team members how we can do better next time after the project has been completed. Their constructive feedbacks are good sources for future enhancements.

Together with my Co-Chair, I learned that team work contributed to the effectiveness and timeliness in the registration process and distribution of the conference packets to the attendees respectfully and efficiently at the Fall Conference, 2017.  

Winnie Ma, ALG, ALB