Saturday, March 10, 2007

ED Leader Newsletter, Number 2

Dear Economic Development Leader:

Welcome to the second issue of the ED Leader Newsletter.

Don Iannone has created a new economic development blog focusing on the advancement of the role and impact of leadership in economic development. It is called the Economic Development Leader (ED Leader). You can find it on the Web at:

Note: ED Leader replaces ED Futures, which was published by Don Iannone over the past four years. Because of the huge need for leadership development in economic development, Don has decided to re-focus his attention and energy in this specific area.

Giving leadership to economic development efforts is no simple matter; just ask any economic development organization CEO or board member. In recognition of this challenge, Don Iannone, a longstanding consultant and advisor to urban and rural economic development organizations across America and internationally, has created this blog to spark a dialogue with economic development leaders about the key issues they face and how to address them.

Let's start with a definition of leadership. Leadership is defined primarily by what we do, not by the role we have been assigned. Good leadership starts with our inner intentions, it is guided by values, and it possesses clarity and vision about what is most important. Authentic leadership is important to me personally. Authentic leadership occurs when our intentions and actions are aligned and in service to the highest purpose possible in a given situation.

As many other leadership experts have said: "Who we are comes before what we do!" The economist Kenneth Boulding reminds us that: "the meaning of a message is the change which it produces in the image." This is an important point for us to bear in mind as we think about how leadership is applied to economic development at the local, regional and state levels. What change for the good have we produced in our exercise of leadership in economic development?

ED Leader will do two things. First, it will examine and discuss leadership issues encountered in economic development. Second, it will reach out into the larger field of leadership for the best ideas that can help advance economic development leadership. Hopefully by doing these two things, you will be motivated to jump into the conversation with your ideas. The dialogue is vital for all of us to give shape to ourselves as leaders in economic development.

One final point deserves clarification. When I use the term economic development leader, I am referring to those serving on economic development leadership bodies and boards, as well as the economic development professional. Both give vital leadership to economic development efforts.

I hope this new resource is valuable to you and helps you as an economic development leader. Please feel free to email me with your ideas, or better yet, post a comment to this blog.

Scroll down and you will find a number of new articles posted to the ED Leader blog. Drop by the blog and say hello. Leave us a comment so we will know you came by.

Best wishes,

Don Iannone

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