Life, Liberty, & Happiness

Leadership Is Hard


here are two basic reasons why leaders are important: First, they are responsible for the effectiveness of organizations. Stock prices rise and fall according to the public perception of how good the leader is. Second, We need anchors and guides. Leaders inspire us and restore our hope. Great leaders allow us to be part of something bigger than ourselves.

But real leadership is hard. Great leadership is not simply metrics and achieving financial results (although these are certainly important aspects). America’s corporate climate is self-perpetuating because it has created an entire generation of managers in its own image. As a result, many CEOs became bosses, not leaders. They have no ability to inspire anyone (except themselves).

It is not enough for a leader to do things right; the leader must do the right thing. Furthermore, a leader without some vision of where he wants to take the organization is not a leader.

Basic Ingredients of Leadership

The first basic ingredient of leadership is a guiding vision. The leader has a clear idea of what he or she wants to do—professionally and personally.

The second basic ingredient of leadership is passion. The leader who communicates passion gives hope and inspiration to other people.

The next basic ingredient of leadership is integrity: Self-knowledge, candor, and maturity. Until you truly know yourself, your strengths and weaknesses, know what you want to do and why you want to do it, you cannot succeed in any but the most superficial sense of the word.

Every leader needs to have experienced and grown through following— learning to be dedicated, observant, capable of working with and learning from others, never servile, always truthful. Having located these qualities in themselves, leaders can encourage them in others.

WE DO NOT LEAD an organization, department or group; and your people do not follow strategic plans, fancy goals or year-end reports | THEY FOLLOW A PERSON. Often, our understanding is diluted with operational plans, goal setting, revenue and sales forecasting, cash flow, HR, compliance and the company’s bottom line.

How you positively influence others is the most important part of leadership.

About Dr. Michael Burcham

Michael is an executive coach, entrepreneur, investor, and strategist with 30 years of experience leading investor-backed, high-growth organizations.

“I built and sold a $40M company with Dr. Burcham as my mentor. This is the thing: if you EVER get the opportunity to learn from this man, from that moment forward, you’ll list him as one of the most influential people in your life, even if you live to be 90. And, you’ll know how lucky you were to have that opportunity and you’ll immediately say YES to any chance to be in his presence again—his wisdom is that impactful.”

Sherry Stewart Deutschmann

Former CEO, Letter Logic

“If you are looking for a trusted mentor and coach for yourself or your leadership team, I highly recommend Michael Burcham. He has worked with me as my executive coach for well over a decade now. Our conversations and his feedback have helped me sharpen my critical thinking skills. He’s a trusted advisor that I can confidentially speak with about any issue—and I know I’ll get valued feedback. I highly recommend him.”

Ryan McGrath

CEO, Asset Living

“Dr. Burcham’s depth and breadth of experience makes even the most ADD entrepreneurial leader sit up and take notes! His coaching skills bring out the ‘best you’ possible. He selflessly shares the good, the bad, and the ugly—leaving you with an authentic and moving experience sure to spur action and professional growth!”

Julie Lenzer

Director, U.S. Department of Commerce


Get In Touch

Looking for a professional development coach or a career change?

Do you need help developing your management teams or creating a strategic plan?

Wanting to build engagement around innovation or teach your team to build investor value?

If you are ready to develop winning strategies, contact me today to schedule a confidential discussion.

Contact Michael