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Leadership Reflections from Chris Lofgren

Chris LofgrenChristopher B. Lofgren, former President and CEO of Schneider National and former Chairman of the US Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, met with my leadership class each time it was offered. He wrote the Foreword in Why It Matters: Reflections on Practical Leadership. Although Chris is quoted frequently in the book, it contains only a sampling of his reflections on leadership. Consider the following:

  • “Managers hold people accountable. Leaders create an
    environment in which people hold themselves accountable.”
  • “Leadership is not easy. It’s all about living alone and living with anxiety.”
  • “To be effective, you have to move the hearts and minds of people.”
  • “Diversity is important because, if everyone is thinking the same way, only one of you is needed.”
  • “Change beliefs and you will change outcomes.”
  • “Beliefs stand in the way of performance.”
  • “Test the power of beliefs.”
  • “Beliefs can cause you to do extraordinary things and they can stop you from doing what you want to do.”
  • “Self-talk holds you back.”
  • “Vision, without execution, is hallucination.”
  • “All real change starts from inside out.”
  • “Motivating change requires courage and conviction.”
  • “Guard your agenda carefully.”
  • “To prevent tension becoming chaos in an organization, trust and respect must be present.”
  • “A job will reward you and pay you, but it will not love you back.”
  • “I don’t want people to think position carries privilege, so I park in the farthest spot in the parking lot.”
  • “The heart is a whole lot more powerful than the mind.”
  • “Continue to strive for excellence. You’ll never get there.”
  • “Practice optimistic discontent.”
  • “No matter how thin the pancake is, it always has two sides.”
  • “Success can cause your demise, especially when it becomes arrogance.”
  • “If you want to make a difference, do it through people.”
  • “If you want to make a difference in the world, don’t wait until tomorrow.”
  • “There are two kinds of people: victors and victims. Victims blame their problems on others and deny their wrongdoings. Victors take responsibility when things go wrong and look ahead with optimism and hope.”

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