Collaborative Leadership

This last Friday, I had the privilege of listening to Chief Kristen Ziman speak in front of my Aurora Leadership Academy’s weekly meeting. She not only provided a history of her work as a police officer, she also explained to all of us how she personally evolved as a leader.

She mentioned that even when faced with a situation today, she will lean on the knowledge of her commanders when she is unsure on how to handle a situation that arises. Rather than make a quick and uninformed decision, she will collaborate with other members of her team to ensure that the decision made is in the best interest of everyone involved.

While it’s hard for me to relate to the large-scale decisions Chief Ziman has to make on a daily basis, I can relate to engaging others when making a decision in my professional life.

I am still relatively young in my field when compared to my peers. Because of this, I tend to lean on more experienced co-workers when I have a difficult decision to make. I will start with saying what my gut instinct is, and then listen to their suggestions. Even if I know my initial choice is correct, I will go to them for validation on my thoughts.

By doing this, I am not only making sure I am making the best decision for my company and/or my customer, but I am also furthering my knowledge to better myself in my career.

Will Garcia has delivered commercial banking solutions for over 5 years working with small to mid-size businesses in the Chicagoland area, serving currently as a Commercial Banking Representative at Old Second National Bank. He is a graduate of the University of St. Francis in Joliet and is pursuing a MBA from NIU. He is a participant in the Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce’s 2018 Leadership Academy program.

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