It has been said that real life imitates art.  As I recently toured through Art Prize I was reminded that this should be true with some of the exhibits.  Art can sometimes remind us of our values and what we have may have been neglecting.

For example, one of the exhibits was a pair of large red glasses.  The story to the glasses is a girl who had Down Syndrome and a Congenital Heart Defect.  While she was alive, she faced many struggles.  However, she fought through the obstacles, always had a smile, and brightened the lives of those around her.

Whatever obstacles you face today, you can maintain a can-do attitude, and resolve to work your way through or around them.

This is not just wishful thinking but an essential attribute for any leader who wants to succeed.  Overcoming obstacles is a normal part of leadership. If you allow your attitude to be impacted by challenging circumstances, you will struggle as a leader.

Another example of a leadership paradigm is the Tin Man holding a heart.  The story to this piece was the idea that the Tin Man was giving the most important thing he had to give, his heart.  As in the original story, the Tin Man experienced pain, but still wanted to give his heart to others.

Likewise, as leaders, sometimes those we lead can create difficulties, frustrations, and pain in our working relationships.  However, leaders must do what they know to be right in their hearts to provide the best for those they lead, the team, and the organization.

Finally, as you see the various art exhibits, you will notice the creativity, the innovation and resourcefulness of the artists.  These again are attributes that every leader must maintain.  In the hectic pace of work it is easy to lose sight of thinking creatively, reviewing what options we have in the midst of less than perfect situations, and being solution focused.

Put on your red glasses, take up the Tin Man’s heart, and look at your work through the eyes of the artist.  These steps will create great opportunities for you and your team!