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#Trendsetters Part 2: Lead By Example

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Our November Life Development Series

By: Johnathan Moore, South Carolina

In order to be an effective leader, one must lead by example. I’m sure we all have heard that line once or twice in our lives, right? Well I know I have, so much so, that I find myself telling the 125 students that I teach that all the time.

But, what does that truly mean? How does one go about doing that, and who can be that example?


This month we are focusing on what it takes to be a “Trendsetter,” what characteristics must one possess, and how does one become a trendsetter? By leading by example. This will probably be the only time that I can quote urban dictionary, but they define the word trendsetter to mean: A leader of the pack, someone who everyone else follows. A trendsetter is one who is not scared to step into the spotlight and take a risk. Trendsetters do not conform, but outperform all of the rest. They outperform by being the ones that think outside of their comfort zone, that box that so many of us place ourselves in. Trendsetters are not concerned about the naysayers, the opinions of others, they are not easily discouraged, and most importantly they lead by example.

In order to be an effective trendsetter, one must master these five steps:
1) Take responsibility…blaming cost you your credibility.
2) Acknowledge failure.
3) Be persistent…. try, try, and try again.
4) Listen, ask questions, and seek to understand the problem
5) Create Solutions…. don’t dwell in the problem.


A leader must take responsibility for their actions, not point fingers, and put the blame on someone else. In doing this, one must also acknowledge when they are wrong, or have failed at something. Leading by example does not mean that one must be perfect, but to have a positive outlook on the situation, even if you didn’t succeed the first time. Failure is a great teacher, failing at something should just give us the motivation and drive to attack the problem or situation from a different aspect. Once you have failed at something, take the time to self-reflect, and then keep trying until you succeed. In order to be an effective trendsetter one must also, listen, ask questions and then seek to understand, because the goal is to create solutions, start something fresh, and not dwell in the problem or what’s considered the norm. So, don’t become complacent, keep fighting for what you believe in, because you are a Trendsetter!

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