That MBA degree is dandy, but the lessons learned can’t hold a candle to Mom’s (or Dad’s or Gram’s) wisdom. A recent poll of Humanergists resulted in these leadership lessons from our very first role models.

I don’t care if “everyone” is doing it. Mom taught us to have courage and make decisions for ourselves. Don’t get caught up in passing trends or we’ve-always-done-that thinking.

If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything. Sometimes harsh truths must be spoken, but keep balance by sharing positives as well. Don’t speak in anger, when it may be harder for you to communicate the good along with the bad.

Accept a compliment graciously. Maybe it’s embarrassment or false humility, but we often stumble or say, “oh, it wasn’t that great,” when a simple “thank you” is all that is needed.

Get outside. While this phrase was most often used when Mom was sick of us underfoot, we recognize now the power of nature to boost our mood and change our perspective. Get up, walk around, go outside or do whatever it takes to change your environment. You’ll find inspiration –¬† or at least some respite from the usual routine.

What am I, chopped liver? Especially in adolescence, we kids acted as if our parent were alien life forms and unworthy of kindness or consideration. Remember that even the most quirky of our fellow humans deserves respect and compassion.

Do you want your face to freeze like that? Nonverbals not only matter, they communicate volumes, even when we’re not aware of them. Get some feedback about how your posture, facial expressions and mannerisms help or hurt your leadership.

Every cloud has a silver lining. No matter how distressing, every situation has potential advantages and disadvantages. Don’t ignore the cloud, but do recognize and capitalize upon the silver lining.

If wishes were horses, then beggars would ride. Dream big, but don’t just passively yearn for things to be different. If you want something, take a step today to make it a reality. Action is necessary to achieve.

Be home in time for dinner. There’s nothing like unstructured time with loved ones to recharge your batteries. Share a story, a joke or something that happened in your day. Listen as others to do the same. Even if it’s just take-out pizza, it will be a feast.

Mom’s most enduring lessons were not the ones she talked about.¬† They came by the way she lived her life – with grace in spite of our many imperfections and bravery in the face of life’s challenges. The least we can do is try to do the same. Thanks, Mom.

Have a question or want some input from Humanergy about this topic? Contact us and we’ll get right back to you!