UPDATE:  Follow this link for a playback of the Seminar highlighted below

A free Webinar will be hosted by Linkage on Thursday June 9th at 11 AM Eastern time on “Leading Your Own Life: A New Approach to Employee Engagement” and featuring Executive Coach (and one of my idols) Dr. Marshall Goldsmith.

Click here to register…oh, and here’s some some pre-viewing…and below that, some pre-reading.  See you there!

Stop Chasing the Wrong Priorities
by Marshall Goldsmith

I’ve spent a lot oftime studying what makes people happy, successful leaders. But some of the best suggestions I can think of came out of a study of a bunch of elderlyretirees, who, as far as I know, never had been CEOs. A friend of mine had interviewed this group about what advice they’d give to youngerpeople. What, they were asked, is the key to having a great life?

Their answers were both simple and wise so I’ll summarize here.Then I will explain what applicability I think they have to your careers.

1.  Be happy now. Not next week, not next month, not next year.Now. The great Western disease we are spreading around the world is “I’ll be happy when.” When I get that BMW, when I get that newhouse, when I get that status. Americans are among the luckiest people in the history of the world. Don’t get so wrapped up looking at what youdon’t have that you miss that, what you do have.

2.  Appreciate your friends and family. When you’re 95 years old andyou’re on your death bed, do you think you’ll be surrounded by your clients? It’s your friends and family who matter most.

3.  If you have a dream, go for it. Want to write a book? Visit New Zealand? Learn to speak Mandarin? Your dream doesn’t have to big–itcould be one that people think is silly, or just plain nuts. It’s your dream, and you should go for it now because when you’re 75, you maynot be able to do it.

Now how does this apply to being a better, more fulfilled leader? It turns out the advice hews pretty closely.

1. Having fun at your job is key.

It’s important not only because life is short, but if you don’t enjoy whatyou’re doing, it will be very hard to make your colleagues enthusiastic. Want the young people who work for you to be happy at work? You gofirst.

2. You need to take the time to help your colleagues.

It can’t be all about you. Coach your subordinates; givefeedback to coworkers. The most important reason to do this has nothing to do with money. The most important reason is that 95-year-old retiree wouldbe proud of you if you did and disappointed with you if you don’t. And if you don’t believe this is true, ask any CEO who has retired:“What are you proud of?” I’ve interviewed many, and not one told me how big their office was or how fancy their car was; usuallywhat they talk about is relationships that meant the most to them.

3. “Going for it” is the most important thing you can do foryourself.

In a fast-changing world, where industries are being overturned, the only certainty is doing what you believe in. You may notsucceed–you could even fail miserably– but at least you would be able to look at yourself in the mirror and say, “Oh, what the heck,at least I tried.”

Originally published in bNet