Kevin Cashman, founder of LeaderSource and author of the business bestsellers Leadership from the Inside Out and Awakening the Leader Within, believes that leadership is an expression of a person's own unique qualities. As an executive coach to such major companies as Novartis and General Mills, Cashman had great expertise to share with Pepperdine's Graduate School of Education and Psychology students at the March 2004 discussion event, held across the street from the West Los Angeles Graduate Campus.
"Effective leaders," he said, "do not mimic managerial strategies and techniques. Instead, they find qualities within themselves that inspire and move others."
Students and faculty in attendance found Cashman's ideas to be helpful in expanding their personal understanding of what it takes to be a leader. "The question-and-answer period following the event was especially interesting," said Dr. Farzin Madjidi, professor of education. "In that discussion time, Cashman explained how a leader's personality becomes the foreground of an organization's culture, while the organization's traditions become its background culture. He also discussed how bringing those two elements into harmony would help the success of the organization."