Three Leadership Lessons From Queen Elizabeth II
Not all leaders' deaths are mourned. One with authoritative power over several others is placed in a leader's position but what truly determines his/her reputation is their leadership skills.
It was Queen Elizabeth II's fundamentally strong leadership skills that enabled her to lead her way as one of the world's most powerful political figures. Throughout her life, she powerfully exemplified, how to lead by serving, resilient perseverance, and wisdom in personal branding.
On September 8th, 2022, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II passed away. She was 96 years old. The Queen's reign lasted for 7 decades, from the industrial age to the internal age. It was not only her legacy as Britain’s longest-serving monarch but also the unwavering dedication that endeared her to millions. The Queen's lifetime of dedication is "impossible to put into words," said the mayor of the West Midlands Andy Street, as she was a "constant throughout all our lives, providing hope, strength, and unity through some of the country's toughest times."
As we share our condolences with each other, we would like to visit Queen Elizabeth II's leadership and what we can learn from her. Having led the nation through a number of tumultuous events for 70 years, it wouldn't be an overstatement that Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II would be more than qualified to pen a bestselling leadership book.
Here are the top three leadership lessons we picked:
Serve to Lead
Did you know that she was a trained truck mechanic during WWII? For her country, the Queen was more than ready to roll up the sleeves and get her hands dirty.
Above everything else, the Queen's life is all about serving the United Kingdom and the other 14 Commonwealth realms. On February 6, 2022, the day that marked the 70th anniversary of her accession to the throne, the Queen made the following speech:
“As we mark this anniversary, it gives me pleasure to renew to you the pledge I gave in 1947 that my life will always be devoted to your service ... And so as I look forward to continuing to serve you with all my heart, I hope this Jubilee will bring together families and friends, neighbours and communities – after some difficult times for so many of us – in order to enjoy the celebrations and to reflect on the positive developments in our day-to-day lives that have so happily coincided with my reign.”
The Queen truly dedicated her life to serving others. This was why, during World War Two, she willingly went through training to be a truck mechanic to serve her country. The Queen surely knew the gravity of the crown she had to endure; Yet, she did it the most elegantly by fully committing everything she had to the cause.
Resilience through Uncertainty
A number of history-shaping events happened during the Queen's 70-year reign. From World War II, boom times, recessions, family scandals, and tragedies to the recent global pandemic, the Queen was put on thin ice over and over.
Last year, she lost her beloved husband, Prince Philip. His passing was only a couple of months shy of what would have been his 100th birthday. As heartbreaking as it must have been to her, the Queen didn't let this tragedy make her lose her focus. To everyone's surprise and respect, the Queen resumed her duty shortly after his death.
Through a number of extreme changes and uncertainty, the Queen simply pushed through. Although she sometimes need to change her approach, she was mentally and psychologically resilient to face various challenges and come out of them stronger than before.
Personal Branding: Be Authentic with Yourself
Without any doubt, Queen Elizabeth had the world's most recognized face. Her simple, elegant, and smart dress code has made her presence more distinctive. From how she spoke to how she acted in front of others, whether it is a single person or a crowd, the Queen effortlessly aligned herself to her authentic personal brand.
Many books, articles, seminars, and even educational courses are written on how to successfully build a sustaining personal brand. If you want to increase your influence in your own sphere of influence, you need to explore both the internal (how you are built up and your natural characteristics) and the external (how you appear to others and how others reflect you). Only when your internal and external worlds come into beautiful harmony, you can accelerate to reaching your full potential. Queen Elizabeth nailed this principle of personal branding.
Rest in peace, Your Majesty.