The following is reprinted from The Miamian,
Vol. 20, No. 2
question isn't whether you will be a leader, but what kind,
Lynda Green McDermott '72 told the Miami University (Ohio)
Class of 2001 at the Senior Last Lecture. "The loyalty
which will inspire others to follow your lead is born out
of who you are at your core -- what your values are and the
authenticity and congruence between your actions and your
In the shadows of Elliott and Stoddard halls, she discussed
the power of character, courage, creating, caring, and choice.
As head of her own management consulting firm, EquiPro, headquartered
in New York City, Lynda understands leadership better than
most. She advises those not sure about their leadership paths
to stop worrying.
"Instead, start daydreaming, and say to
yourself, 'If I ... had all the power I needed, where would
I go, what would I do?' And then really, really listen to
the whispers in your head -- the thoughts that wake you up
in the night -- that is your soul talking."
As for caring, she cautioned, "You will
not create or live your leadership legend or leave your legacy
without the help and support of others. ... You will not build
loyal teams without genuinely and authentically caring about
others and giving of yourself to your organization, your community,
to your family, to your friends."
Finally, choice. "Take a moment and mentally
write down the two things you most want to do when you graduate.
Now draw a line through the item you listed first. That is
perhaps the one that others want you to do for them."
"Leadership requires working harder, working
smarter, sometimes being ahead of the curve and taking an
unpopular stand. It will take conviction and perseverance."