Michael Tennyson

The picture of a wise mentor.


I have had several great mentors in my life, and I have tried to be a great mentor to others. The mentors I remember the most poured their wisdom into me in the hope that I would go further and accomplish more than they themselves did. I learned in this process that only the most confident of leaders can help their team shine brighter than themselves.

If you have a mentor, how can you be sure you are receiving wise counsel? If you are a mentor to someone else, how can you be sure you are giving wise counsel?

In my book, The Leadership GPS, Brian Alden is in just this situation. He needs someone to mentor him in his new leadership role, and there are people in his life that need a mentor. Brian looks to his grandfather, Michael Tennyson, for a solution to each of these needs.

How could Brian be sure he would receive wise counsel in this situation from his grandfather?

– Brian and his grandfather had common principles – honesty, integrity, respect. Most importantly they believed in helping others succeed.

– Michael Tennyson was a successful business man who had started and grown many companies in his career. He was a mentor to each leader in his organizations.

– Brian’s grandfather knew first-hand the pitfalls of mistakes he had made. These mistakes became lessons for his next choices and for others he would mentor.

– The wisdom of the generations was not lost on Michael Tennyson. He was a student of historical leaders and could apply their experience to his own and to others’ situations.

How could Brian be sure he was giving wise counsel to those he mentored?

– One rule: Pass on the wisdom he receives from those like his grandfather who have earned his trust through their example.

Before you say “I can’t”, you pass by “I can.” – Part 2

In my last blog I discussed believing in yourself and choosing “I can if,” and not “I can’t because,” when faced with struggles or doubt.

Sometimes it isn’t enough to be the only one who believes in yourself – what do you do then? 

The success of a journey often depends more on who you are with than where you are going.”
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