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4 Reinvention Strategies Leaders Can Learn From Legally Blonde

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Legally Blonde recently celebrated a milestone on July 13. The twenty-year-old movie franchise revolves around Elle Woods who wanted nothing more than to be married to Warner Huntington III, but the rejection she faced from him spurred her to reinvent and for us to fall in love with the buoyant blonde.

In many ways, each supporting character showcases reinvention traits in a peculiar way. Loose leadership lessons from reinventing can be found throughout this movie if you know where to find them.

1. Break Up With Negative Labels

Elle took charge of things after she was rejected by Warner whom she was so sure would propose to her. However, due to his political ambitions, Warner was looking to marry a Jackie, not a Marilyn. Hence her determination to disprove the negative label and that she could be a Jackie, triggered her desire to want to get into law school. Her aspirations spurred by a plan to get Warner back proved that if you set your mind on a goal or an activity, you can push past difficulties and accomplish it.

Elle took charge of things and in retrospect had the full potential for what it would take on the inside of her to get into law school but this would have all been lost had she not gone through her breakup. The popular saying, adversity is the mother of reinvention, plays throughout the movie and the steps she took to transform and shed the dumb blonde persona embodies that.

It’s important leaders get rid of any preconceived notions they have about themselves or those they lead as it prevents them from going to the next level opening the door to prejudice and self-sabotage

2. Don’t Quit

In her pursuit of gaining admission to Harvard law school, Elle went through a transformation going from self-doubt to self-confidence. Her confidence only came after going through this journey and gaining clarity on what she really wanted out of life, from others and herself. She discovers that there is more to life than just being pretty possibly a higher purpose. Her encounters with Paulette; fellow sorority sister Brooke Taylor Windham and Professor Stromwell further assured her of the need to carry on and the importance of vindicating herself when Professor Callahan propositions her. 

The confidence shift Elle went through meant she had to face her fears and have candid conversations with herself to keep her going even when it seemed tough and not worth it when quitting would have been the easier option. After all law school wasn’t a career path that she chose. She could have easily fallen back on her rich dad if all else failed. She persevered and taught us to never let anyone tell us, we’re not good enough or stand in our way as Warner tried so many times to tell her.

Quitting in the midst of adversity as a leader is not an option. You are responsible for carrying the team through to the other side in the good and bad times.

“Once you learn to quit, it becomes a habit.” – Vince Lombardi

3. Friendships Matter

Elle’s inner circle made up of Margot, Serena, and Paulette was key to her success. Everyone needs a hype team. A team of people that will bring out the best in you by fueling your confidence especially when you’re at the brink of throwing in the towel. From her prep for the L.S.A.T. to the overwhelming support she got from her sorority sisters and subsequent times when she felt out of place, Elle found support from her inner circle and they made sure she didn’t give up supporting her through her highs and lows.  

Leaders need to have that inner circle that they can trust and who feel empowered to speak up when the leader is going astray. In addition, you need that confidante, that one person you can confide in. Elle ultimately had that in Emmett, she could trust him and he got her attention and further empowered her with his words of encouragement and affirmation.

4. Think Outside the Box

Elle Woods’ newfound confidence gave her the extra boost she needed to submit her law school application and thinking she didn’t have much going for her, knew she had to stand out. Her admissions video essay was a brilliant strategy that worked to her advantage as it made her stand out for the heavily coveted spot of admission to the prestigious Harvard law school.  

She highlighted and gave compelling reasons why she should be considered and it’s the same strategy leaders should follow when leading a team. You don’t always have to lead the same way it’s been done before, sometimes leadership decisions require taking an action that’s unconventional and you have to be comfortable with that and its outcome. 

Elle Woods says it best at her law school graduation when she states “…it is with passion, the courage of conviction and a strong sense of self that we take our next steps into the world remembering those first impressions are not always correct, you must always have faith in people and most importantly you must always have faith in yourself.” 

It takes courage to go through a process of reinvention as Elle did, and life as we know it is about learning and adapting to new situations in both our personal and professional lives and the ability to evolve is a key leadership trait for success.

Lola Salvador Akinwunmi is a writer, global consultant, leadership & reinvention strategist with a passion for helping professional women navigate the ever-changing leadership landscape. She brings more than two decades of corporate experience to her clients on their journey to uncover the next stage in their lives. As the founder of LolaSal, Inc., Lola elevates professional powerhouse women to their next level. Her award-winning clients have gone on to speak on stages; get awards in their careers and media features.

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Success Advice

How Your Friends Determine Whether You Succeed or Not

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Can anyone do without having friends? We all have our friends, we share ideas with them, talk together, have fun, and fight. Yes, that’s the baseline of friendship. But, do you know that aside from you, your friends can determine whether you achieve success or not?

There are two things in friendship which are the ability to ”love” and the ability to “influence”. This means you are loved and you are influenced. How do your friends affect your success in life? How are they one of the biggest deciding factors of your success? Let’s find out.

What type of friends do you keep? 

First, what type of friends do you keep? Who do you call your best friend? There are two different kinds of friends, good friends, and bad ones. A lot of people have lost their pathway to success and some have also found their road to success all because of the friends they keep, the people they mingle with. 

Who is your best friend? Answer carefully. Having a best friend means you find each other compatible and understanding. Analyze who your best friend is. If your best friend has not motivated you to do something positive, if who you call your bestie has never given you positive advice, lastly if your best friend has never informed and advised you on your shortcomings, then you don’t have a best friend.

This quote tells us “birds of the same feather flock together”. Countless people have changed from their good nature into a bad one all because of friends. One thing to note is, “negative people move with negative aura”. If your best friend is filled with negativity inside-out then you will surely be affected by his/her negative aura.

They influence your success with positivity or negativity 

The friends you keep can either influence you with positivity or negativity because your friends have the power to change your kind of person completely. 

This is how your friends influence you:

  1. They influence you indirectly with what they do
  2. They influence you directly by teaching and giving you advice 

Yes, that is how they influence you. For instance, you watch a movie and you like the way the actor walks. The question is if you truly like the way the actor walks, won’t you try to imitate the actor? Of course, you will.

Just the way you imitate the actor is the same way your friends can influence you with their character. However, the funny part is, they don’t have to teach you to do things like them. You just find yourself imitating and copying them gradually.

An important question to ask is, are you imitating a good friend or a bad one? If you imitate a good friend then you will be good, but if you imitate a bad person, you will surely become a bad person.

Everyone wants to succeed, a good friend will always teach, enlighten, and motivate you for success. A bad friend will only motivate you to do evil things (smoking, drinking, fight, envy,).

And you should know that things like that are a great enemy of success and even of God. So, if you have these bad elements in your life, how will you achieve success? There is no way!

And also, they can teach and advise you directly. But, what do your friends teach you? When you ask them for advice do they inspire you positively or teach you the bad stuff.? A lot of people have regretted lifelong decisions just by listening to the advice of friends. 

The company you keep has the power to influence and change you. Never forget that a positive influence will teach, motivate, and brush you up for success. While a negative influence will inspire you to become a bad person, change your good nature, and leave you with regrets in the end.

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The 3 Step Process to Building a Profitable Pitch

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As a communication coach, one of the top questions entrepreneurs ask me is how to deliver a winning pitch to potential investors. They want to know if there’s a magic formula to get an investor to say yes and buy into their dream and their business. (more…)

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The 4 Pillars of Wealth and Abundance

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Have you ever wondered what the formula for a wealthy and abundant life is? Many people have. Lots has been written about the subject of wealth creation and living an abundant life. It was a breaking point in my journey and pursuit of success when I found out that there is a clear path to achieve success in life. Thanks to those who have shared their journey, we can clearly see and follow the principles of prosperity. (more…)

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Success Advice

Here Are 4 Reasons Why You Should Have a Podcast, Youtube Channel or Online Show

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why you should have a podcast
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Confidence comes from a place of strong understanding of self. After close to three years on radio, I’ve grown from a shy introvert to a shy introvert with an extrovert persona. When the mic is turned on, I can channel a version of myself that some say is attractive, strong, and of course, confident but it wasn’t always this way.

What I want to share with you is what I discovered on this journey into broadcast that you can apply to your life, your ventures, and your personal development. This doesn’t require any fancy gear. It does require a leap of faith on your part because once you go down the road of media; it can change your life.

1. Perceived Expertise

When you go to a doctor, you expect their knowledge will guide them to a solution to your problems. When you have a show, you become your listeners’ doctor. For all the multiple thousands, maybe millions, of YouTube channels, podcasts, and user-created content in the world, each person that gets behind a mic takes a position on their passion, their opinions, and their themes.

They challenge the status quo for the benefit of their listeners in hopes to entertain and educate. With consistency on your side, those fans place you on a platform and give you permission to influence them.

2. Global Acknowledgement

One of the benefits to increasing confidence is when you receive thank you notes from people you may never meet. The feeling of enriching someone’s life from halfway around the globe, provides validation you’re enhancing someone else’s life with your wisdom and your wit.

The very first time I was told I was making a difference in someone’s life in a country other than my own, I felt like I caused massive impact that transcends my circle of influence. When you experience just how much you can cause impact and it comes back to you, it’ll change your worldview.

“Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining – it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn’t solve any problems.” – Zig Ziglar

3. Backed By Numbers

One of the most exciting ways to measure success is to quantify your growth. It’s not enough to just broadcast. Having subscribers and downloads helps to know, numerically, how well you’re doing. Word of caution. This can be a way to set yourself up for distress because of number envy but if you understand what the numbers mean; you can control the narrative of the numbers.

The major number that makes most people smile is 10,000. I’d advise it to be 1. Here’s why. As you grow in your industry, so does your reach. If you learned that the one person that subscribed totally changed for the better because of you, wouldn’t that be worth the effort?

4. Effective Communication

While it’s not talked about much, having a show is documentation. You create a dynamic account of your life, your industry, and the pulse on what’s important simply by having a show. When you find a channel to improve your communication skills, you demand attention and people will listen to you. You become more trusted as a leader and people will follow you once they believe you can lead them to their wants and needs.

“To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.” – Tony Robbins

These insights have helped many people become leaders and, ultimately, move others to their best selves. It’s worked for me and I hope it works for you. At the end of the day, it’s all about showing up and showing out.

Have you ever thought about having a radio show? If so, what would you talk about? Let us below!

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