The Journey. Keep Going, don’t stop.

 

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I’ll never forget the sight. Standing in line more than a decade ago with hundreds of graduates awaiting the march into the ceremony, I saw my mom and dad walking in together a little late. She, with a basket of fruits too heavy for her to bear, but far too precious not to. Him, adorned in a bright red jacket as if to say “nobody is going to make me miss this special occasion when my daughter receives her Masters degree”! I thought to myself…should I acknowledge them or should I shy away from this somewhat humorous sight? I dismissed the very thought and rushed to their side hugging them both. My action was met with admiration, claps, and with sounds of “aww”, as the waiting graduates stirred. Needless to say that this achievement was for both my parents as neither had college degrees. After the ceremony, my mom hugged and congratulated me with the question “when are you going to get the Doctorate?” The nerve! How could she? But her question stayed with me for years, even after the receipt of yet another Masters degree.

Years later, I finally acceded to fulfilling her dream. She couldn’t do it so I decided to do it for her. A year into the program while enroute to a mandated summer conference in Orlando, I received a call that she (with whom I spoke an hour earlier), had suffered a massive stroke!

That was the start of a yearlong journey to be by her side through thick and thin. Ironically both our journeys were paths of learning. Hers being to learn to talk, to walk, to eat, to do life’s simple things, and to learn the basics of living all over again. Me, to face the reality of the situation that my mother was in, and to learn the skills to adequately provide her care. Along with my two sisters (one who was ailing with the ravages of cancer at the time), we brought her to live closer so we could adequately care for her return to ‘normalcy’.

As I reflect on my dissertation journey, on one occasion I remember receiving an important call from a professor while attending to her needs. I answered the call, got the coaching from the professor then returned to finish her care. This became a routine.

I remember being by her side at the hospital for hours, days, weeks. She was my morning motivation. I couldn’t start the day without her knowing that I cared. It was the same at nights. I couldn’t end the day without visiting her; without her knowing that I was there for her. At work, the leaders knew that if they wanted my best then I needed an hour to be with my mom which was the fuel for the rest of the day. I happily worked that back during lunch or after hours. This went on for a year but sadly she never recovered. We later discovered that her body was wreaked with cancer unknown to our family. It was too much for her to bear.

After she passed this was my driving force. I had to finish my studies for her. I had to accomplish her dream, something she couldn’t do herself. I had to finish to show my two girls that you can accomplish whatever you set your mind to. I had to finish and leave something tangible behind.  This culminated in a research to track the paths of immigrant leaders and their journey to success to achieve the American Dream. I accomplished that feat two years after she passed away. The research is now published and available here. I now spend my time coaching individuals and entrepreneurs to never give up; to keep going, because with that passion they will accomplish their dreams.

BLOGGING 101

I began this blog a few years ago but have hardly been consistent. As an individual in the business of Human Resource Management, and organizational leadership, my passion lies in the development of entrepreneurs, youths and individuals in transition. For that reason, I conducted a study for my dissertation on Success Strategies and decided to publish it recently in my book titled “Success Strategies of Caribbean-American Leaders in the United States”. In the book I sought to answer the question Why Some Individuals Succeed, While Others Don’t.  It is now available on http://www.amazon.com, and http://www.barnesandnoble.com.

I am still writing with the intention of publishing the Success Strategies Workbook, as well as another book titled “GreenLight: When God says Go”.  My intention here is to decide on what my audience prefers to hear, then focus this blog on that. This could be under the topics of leadership, success, inspiration, or lighter moments.

From participating in this new developing experience, I hope to be able to learn how to (1) improve this blog; (2) gain strong insights on how to advance; and (3) confidently connect with and grow followers.

Check out my blog https://successfulleaders.wordpress.com and I would most certainly welcome your comments and insights! Thank you.

 

Success Strategies: Supersize Your Brand FREE Seminar

Entrepreneurs and Professionals Come join Presenters: Gregory Turner, Author and Customer Acquisition Specialist, Nordia Cameron- Cunningham, Celebrity Make-up Artist, and Success Coach Dr. Shelly Cameron. Learn how to Supersize your Brand! FREE SEMINAR

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What I Didn’t Do: Letter to My Daughter

We are stepping into a New Year! As always it is a time to reflect on the past where we have come, and the journey ahead. This year I didn’t get to do a lot of things I wanted to, but I experienced something new. I ventured into new territory and published my research on leaders and how they attained success! My book titled Success Strategies of Caribbean American Leaders in the United States is now available on Amazon.com, Barnes&Noble.com, and other sites. Can you believe it?

I am most excited because I started something that I believed in, persisted, and have completed it! I learnt a lot during the process.

This is my desire for you. To go after your dreams. No matter what it is—just simply Dream! Big or small! When you accomplish it, the feeling is exhilarating! As we approach the New Year, spend some time defining what Success means to you. What will it look like? How will you know when you have achieved it? Just Dream. But like I have always said, after you dream then you have to work that dream. Put the plans in place then step out and do what you must to make it real.

I’m not saying it’s going to be easy….no way am I saying that. But the most important thing is to persist. Never give up. When the going gets rough, have something or someone, (maybe a mentor), that will encourage you to keep going. You know I’m always here for you and anyone else that needs encouragement to achieve. I learnt this in my many years managing people. That’s what I do best. It brings me great joy watching people achieve their best potential…moreso you.

So darling, Dream big! Then step forward in faith! You will achieve Success if you never give up!

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So What Does Success Look Like?

 

Book Launch

Author, Speaker, Coach and HR Consultant, Dr. Cameron will discuss the traits of successful Caribbean American Leaders; the challenges they encountered after migration; how they overcame the challenges; and the factors that most influenced their success.

Join us as we embark on this journey, “she says” to those areas that youths and individuals in tranisition can take to become successful in their lives.

Invited guests include elected officials, university professors, and other industry leaders. Moderator Roxanne Valies, Candidate for Florida State Representative, District 95.

THE BIGGEST LEADERS

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I penned my thoughts to write on America’s Biggest Leaders, but somehow found my way to the mailbox. There I saw Fortune’s list of “The World’s 50 Greatest Leaders”. It was no surprise that Geoff Colvin identified the world’s most extraordinary leaders with his criteria being among the living and currently active in their leadership roles. These great individuals included the likes of Pope Francis, Bill Clinton, Warren Buffet, Geoffrey Canada, Angelina Jolie, and others.

I shifted my attention to deceased leaders instead. These individuals were unlike the mega entrepreneurs discussed in Buchholz’s New Ideas From Dead CEOs. Since Leadership means different things to different people, I decided to use Bill Clinton’s definition. In his words, leadership is bringing people together in pursuit of a common cause, developing a plan to achieve it, and staying with it until the goal is achieved. He believes that leaders share the attributes of steadfastness in pursuit of a goal, flexibility in determining how best to achieve it; the courage to make hard decisions; and the confidence to stay with it and explain it.

As the world yearns for effective leadership, it seems to defy us, and as Colvin asserts, it is becoming even more difficult to identify. Of the various leadership attributes, humility was a trait identified by Jim Collins in his research on Good to Great leaders. This quality seems to evade leaders in our society today, in their quest to achieve Success. Humility enamors not being arrogant, haughty or conceited. But more the qualities of being unpretentious and unassuming; modest, courteous, respectful, teachable and selfless.

Top humble leaders that have passed on that emerging leaders can learn from include Nelson Mandela, Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr., Mahatma Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Eleanor Roosevelt, among others. As the ambitious individuals among us strive to be great, humility is encouraged. Let’s be mindful that once “we think we have got it, we have lost it”.  

 

What are your thoughts? Which other past humble leader can you add?