I was on a call with one of the smartest people I know and asking him all of the “what” and “how to” questions I could think of.
He had a job similar to mine but was years ahead of me. All I could think to do what ask him things that I could basically copy.
But then he stopped me.
And changed my life.
And I’ve legit operated differently ever since.
He said, “Swebb … at some point you move from getting paid for what you do to getting paid for who you are.”
I was asking the wrong questions.
I was asking things that would make me a busier project manager instead of a better leader.
I was at my friend’s house swimming with the family on a hot Florida Sunday afternoon. I was on a short call while the kids were in the pool but i would join them soon. My kids were eagerly awaiting my big splash and my permanent role as their climbing tree.
The call ended and I did my best “preach seat” jump my dad taught me. I was in the water 2 seconds when my son quickly shouted for all the hear … “Great, dad, I’m stronger when you’re in the pool.”
Not “I feel stronger” or “You’re so strong, dad.”
But my son – aka someone I lead – gets stronger (and braver, bolder, more confident, better) when I’m present.
 It was the best lesson in leadership I’d ever experienced!
I didn’t do anything to make my son stronger but get in the pool.
Are you working day in and day out accomplishing “what’s”?
Or does your presence move the needle?
I’m not suggesting there aren’t things to do. I’ll vacuum and do laundry when I finish writing this. And I make Google Docs every week for people around the world on “how to build a second campus” and “why a leadership pipeline might be more detrimental than productive.”
But ultimately I believe your leadership legacy is flavored and furthered by the confidence and belief you instill in those you lead.
The next generation needs what you have, not just what you know.


Call me.

Let’s work together to change your paradigm and make you more effective!