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Education, Experience and Relationships

Reflecting on my professional journey, I was reminded about the variety of lessons I

have learned, impacting my career and life. Some lessons came from formal education

opportunities, others from experiences, and more from relationships. My belief is that

these three platforms have provided me with tremendous exposures that are helping

me continue to grow as a leader. Today, I am sharing my thoughts on each to encourage

you on your journey.


Education is critical for our development as ethical leaders, and it can come in many

ways. Education includes formal courses we take for credit or certification, or they can

be less formal workshops taken in class or online. This type of education is important

because it often gives the technical learning we need. It also helps us be disciplined.

Formal education with a graduation or certification at the end of the process usually

requires us to exercise discipline to complete the process. I am confident that my

formal education experiences gave me understanding of the parameters and the

discipline to get things done.


Experience compliments education and it is often how we learn best. On many

occasions, I have gone into situations and had to make decisions about new

circumstances. In fact, experience is ongoing training. I have now learned that my

experience trumps my knowledge in almost every case. I am best when I operate in

areas where I have experience that I can use along with my education. The greatest

thing about experience is that when we are open, we grow from our positive and

negative experiences. As the saying goes, “Experience is the best teacher.”

Relationships are very important in the development of an ethical leader. I can attribute

a significant amount of success on my journey to relationships established along the

way. Through relationships, we gain mentorship from other leaders. We can also

establish meaningful relationships with like-minded individuals who can lead us to

opportunities to grow, personally and professionally. My relationships are so important

to me because I learn from watching others, and I use my relationships to teach others

from my experiences.


Education sets the tone and is a guide for ethical leaders. Experience provides

invaluable, broad and flexible training for ethical leaders. Relationships allow

ethical leaders to save time by learning from the successes and failures of others.

All three have been instrumental for me, and I hope you reflect on these to help you

Lead with Integrity.

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