The National Society of Leadership and Success
Building leaders who make a better world
In this Issue: 
Letter from the PresidentAnnouncementsSuccess CornerSociety Spotlight Monthly Motivation

Letter From the President: 

Dear Society Member,

It’s officially September, and for most of you, that means the fall semester is underway. As you adjust to a new schedule and make headway in the 2017-2018 academic year, I want to take a moment to discuss how effective leaders navigate difficult times.

Between classes, work, internships and extracurriculars, it’s easy to fall into survival mode with so much going on. However, when you’re in a leadership position, it’s important to maintain a safe and secure environment for your team when challenges arise.

Great leaders are those who are constantly reinventing themselves and able to adapt to the unexpected. Instead of panicking and resorting to survival mode, exemplary leaders maintain their composure and are capable of taking a step back to survey the situation. Then they swiftly detect the causes of adversity and solve them immediately.

"Many times, crisis results when composure is missing." - Glenn Llopis

During periods of uncertainty, adversity, and crisis, it is pertinent for leaders to appear prepared. Here are a few ways to show leadership composure in high-pressure situations:

· Take Extreme Ownership: Hold yourself accountable and take responsibility for yourself and your team. If you are delegating tasks and one of your team members misunderstood instructions, take the time to review expectations with them once more so the goals you set forth as a team are achieved. As the leader, it is important to maintain an open dialogue and ensure your guidance is being understood. Likewise, if you are in class and don’t understand an assignment, it is your responsibility to seek out your professor for an explanation early on, rather than displacing the accountability onto others. One way to put extreme ownership into practice is by making a list of the number of times you placed the blame on another person or on an external circumstance. Then determine and take note of how you could have solved the problem.

· Maintain a Positive Attitude: As a leader, your team can be positively or negatively impacted by your behavior, action, and overall demeanor. This is especially true during challenging times. Staying strong, being encouraging and smiling often are physical cues that reassure and inspires your team to remain optimistic. In order to maintain positivity, you must learn to recognize and anticipate negative situations before they arise. Use each negative situation that comes your way as an opportunity to grow. Instead of channeling a negative reaction to the situation, do the opposite with a controlled response. Finding something positive in an adverse circumstance will only improve the situation, not worsen it.

· Be Decisive and Believe: Being decisive in your words and actions is a must when trying to rally the support of your team. The first step is being fully invested in it yourself. The worst thing you could do is give your team the impression that you don’t approve of or aren’t fully invested in the course of action. Before you can sell it to your team, you must be sold on it yourself. Even if you inherited a project or plan of execution from a higher up, ask questions and create a list of the benefits and reasoning for that particular course of action. Then use that list of selling points when delivering the plan to your team, stay positive and prove that you are completely sold on the method.

It’s easy to lose composure during challenging and uncertain times. The best leaders maintain composure in times of adversity, enabling them to pause and critically evaluate what’s in front of them in order to face and resolve problems head-on. The next time a problem arises, challenge yourself as a leader to demonstrate a strong and dynamic sense of composure to motivate your team towards success.

I wish you all positive thoughts and actions as you navigate your fall semester.

Best wishes,

Charles Knippen
The National Society of Leadership and Success

Continue reading below in the Monthly Motivation section for the nine things great leaders do in difficult times.
Success Corner: 

How to kill groupthink in your company
By Charles Knippen

Ralph Nader once said: “The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.” The problem is, this is easier said than done. Effective leaders inspire teams to collaborate in decision-making. This means choosing the best courses of action and integrating the ideas from your various team members. But the process for group decision-making can be flawed. The problem is that leaders, when trying to promote leadership skills and individuality, can instead produce a mass of followers. And followers rarely innovate or take charge of a situation. We call this groupthink. As a leader, it is important to recognize how it happens and how to move your team away from groupthink.

Read more
Monthly Motivation: 

“Leadership is lifting a person's vision to high sights, the raising of a person's performance to a higher standard, the building of a personality beyond its normal limitations.”
― Peter Drucker

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, concerned citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.”
― Margaret Mead

9 Things Great Leaders Do in Difficult Times
By Bill Murphy Jr.

Great leadership seems easy when things are good and everybody's happy. When times grow tough, however, a leader's true colors are revealed.

Ten years ago, a group of U.S. soldiers tasted combat for the first time in Sadr City, Iraq. I got to know one of the junior U.S. leaders in that battle when I wrote a book about West Point and wartime. The short version is that it was a fierce fight, and the start of months of tough, daily fighting.

Dave Swanson was a 26-year-old lieutenant then. He's out of the military now, and we talked recently about what he learned by leading 40 soldiers in 82 straight days of combat. Most of us probably won't be taking a platoon into a hail of gunfire anytime soon, but applying these principles can greatly improve your effectiveness as a leader, no matter what challenges you face.
Click here to continue reading.

Our members are leading and inspiring individuals on their campuses and in their communities across the country every day, and we want to help tell those stories! Articles and other content for upcoming newsletters can be submitted anytime to Please include photos from your event, and let us know what you were doing, who participated and how it impacted your members and community. So many chapters are making a difference every day. Keep up the good work!

Society Spotlight: 

Chapter Events
and Highlights

Southeast Regional Leadership Retreat

Shout-out to the 81 chapter leaders who attended our recent Southeast Regional Leadership Retreat at Georgia Gwinnett College! Big thanks to our wonderful hosts at GGC for making the weekend a great success!


The Society Scholarships and Awards Program supports members for their dynamic leadership, service, chapter/member excellence and financial need.

The scholarships and awards are categorized into three areas:

‌• Stephen Covey Tribute Awards (Spring Semester Only)
‌• Mission-Based Scholarships and Grants


‌• Need-Based Scholarships and Grants​


The Fall 2017 submission period runs from Friday, September 8, 2017 through Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at 11:59 p.m. EST.

Click here to download the Scholarships & Awards Packet and begin your application.

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