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Justin Fanning
Vice President, Estimating & Business Development
Goldin & Stafford
Washington, D.C.

I’ve attended numerous leadership training courses throughout my career, including the ABC Metro Washington Chapter’s Leadership Development Program. 

The most valuable lesson I’ve taken away from this training is that in order to successfully lead others, you must learn to effectively lead yourself. While this seems like a simple concept, it can be challenging for many managers. Learning how to accept criticism and feedback from team members is difficult and uncomfortable, but crucial for continuing to learn, grow and develop important leadership skills.

Through feedback I’ve received, I’ve changed my approach when strategizing with my team members. Instead of just giving out assignments and instructions, I create more of a collaborative discussion. Learning and implementing this has helped develop a strong mutual respect among my team and coworkers, which has improved communication, efficiency and morale. 



Kwabena Osei-Sarpong
CEO
Rife International
Rockville, Md.

Leadership ultimately comes down to an individual’s ability to take a group of people or organization and drive them toward a common purpose. The more intricate part of doing this is activating leadership in people so they are self-motivated to play their part in getting the goal accomplished. Therefore, leaders must embody the values of their organization and lead by example.

The best lesson I’ve learned is: Raise other leaders. This means getting the right people for the right positions and developing them to take leadership in those roles.

Our organization’s impact on the world begins with leadership impartation in our people. We invest a lot of resources into developing our people through formal and informal education, mentoring and coaching. This has resulted in growth, innovation and a sense of purpose in our staff, which has translated into high levels of productivity and accomplishment within our business. 

As a leader, your people will always be a mirror image of the legacy you will leave behind.

Jessica Craft Schlosberg
Director of Human Resources
James Craft & Son, Inc.
York Haven, Pa.

The most important thing I have gained from ABC Keystone’s leadership training would have to be understanding DISC profiles—a personal assessment tool of a person’s behaviors—and what motivates and engages different types of people based on the personality types. This has been instrumental to me when it comes to planning training sessions, updating policies and procedures, and grooming our next generation of leaders.

This tool allows me to improve teamwork and productivity, as well as pinpoint up-and-coming leaders. It’s important to know how to fuel the drive of our future leaders to ensure they are supported, engaged and ready to handle the challenges they will face on their jobsites.

DISC profiling is also a huge asset to our leadership team. It gives them the tools to understand how to motivate, instruct and delegate responsibilities to their crews. Better communication leads to better teamwork, better teamwork leads to greater productivity and great productivity leads to a healthier bottom line.

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