The following thoughts on leadership come from Rorke Denver's latest book "Worth Dying For."
Much of leadership isn't large, sweeping actions. It's about setting values in an organization and convincing other people to share them. Don't make excuses. Lead by example. Don't ask others to do anything you wouldn't do yourself. These are commonsense practices, but it's amazing how often people in leadership positions seem to forget them.
As a leader, no necessary task should be beneath you you. This includes making the coffee, cleaning the toilets, taking out the trash. If you're too good to do those things, suck it up and pretend you aren't. Otherwise, you'll never gain the respect of the people you aspire to lead. Do you have any idea how many points can be scored with skeptical subordinates from a small, humble act? Try taking a phone message, offering to share a donut, or issuing the tiniest compliment. You'll see. Once you grasp that, you'll be doing nice things for others every day. Bot don't worry, the leader who is too full of himself to understand the power of humility will almost certainly have the realization forced on him -- or he won't be a leader for long.