Future Leaders Forum – Opening Night

Today was the first day of the Future Leaders Forum, presented by IEEE USA, in the city of New Orleans. The Future Leaders Forum is an event designed to assist and advance career development. Through it IEEE has planned several talks around key areas: Inspire, Solve, Empower, Adapt, Lead, and Connect.

Inspire: to feed creativity and create innovators who are relentless, tireless, and respected leaders.

Solve: to sharpen problem solving skills and learn from experts in industry on how to recognize potential barriers, overcome obstacles, and resolve issues.

Empower: to identify personal strengths, to find your fit within an organization, and to find ways to build and leverage a rewarding career.

Adapt: to adapt to an ever changing environment of innovation; using tips, tricks, and strategies to stay ahead of the curve and keep your skill set from stagnating.

Lead: to find your leadership style, identify and manage risk, communicate your worth, and realize your full potential.

Connect: to connect to other successful (and potential) leaders. Networking is front and center in this world and by engaging other leaders you learn how to shape your own leadership style.

Today we listened to Peter Eckstein, IEEE USA President, talk about leadership styles and provide his own sense of the best style to be. Eckstein said that the style of leadership required is based on the needs of the company, the budget/time frame, and the people involved. If working with more experienced workers than letting them take charge of tasks and giving them involvement in the company is the best way to stay ahead of production while maintaining employee morale to a high standard. If workers are fresh out of school a more micromanaging approach might be needed until they get a handle on things and feel comfortable stepping out. Overall, Eckstein’s approach can be boiled down to one simple phrase: “your job is to lead and guide, not dictate”.

“Remember the difference between a boss and a leader; a boss says “Go!” – a leader says “Let’s go!” – E.M. Kelly


“A true leader has the confidence to stand alone, the courage to make tough decisions, and the compassion to listen to the needs of others. He does not set out to be a leader, but becomes one by the equality of his actions and the integrity of his intent.” – Douglas MacArthur


— Dylan Shanahan

Co-Chair of Young Professionals, Foothill Section