April’s Leadership Roundtable featured Alex Glenn, State President of Duke Energy. Glenn met with approximately 15 young professionals on Tuesday, April 26, 2016 to speak about leadership, how to make an impact in business and navigating the work-life balance.
Being present and listening to others is impactful and critical to being a strong leader. Beyond showing up, Glenn described 4 qualities that he believes are essential that makes a strong leader.
“You must have integrity. Without it, no one will follow you. It’s critical to do what you say and follow through by doing it,” Glenn remarked. Having follow through builds trust. Integrity also encompasses caring about your team. You build integrity through caring for everyone on the team by getting to know them on an individual basis which breeds trust. Knowing each person individually builds an environment where people want to come to work.
Perseverance is grit and the knowledge that failure is a part of success. Glenn noted how Thomas Edison failed many times until he created the light bulb. He would have actually only known failure if he had quit in the process of creating the light bulb.
Glenn also quoted Mike Tyson, “Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the mouth,” explaining that this can apply to everyday life and how it’s critical to be flexible and be able to adapt to unexpected changes and challenges. Everyone will experience lack of control over a situation at some point in their career or personal life. Perseverance (grit and determination) is what will separate you from 99% of people.
Every leader when faced with a challenge has the opportunity to react positively or negatively. Optimism can hugely affect how people respond to change, as well as team morale and cohesiveness. It’s critical to remain optimistic in the face of change and among the team.
Lastly is intelligence – both competency in doing your job and emotional intelligence. He emphasized that self-awareness is the most important tool you can develop for your career (and personal relationships).
While these 4 qualities make up a great leader, if you don’t love what you’re doing, you are wasting your potential. The advice that Glenn gives the young leaders of St. Petersburg is to figure out what you’re passionate about and follow that path. Use your passion to get involved to make St. Petersburg an even better place to live and grow.
About Alex Glenn:
Alex Glenn is president of Duke Energy’s utility operations in Florida, serving approximately 1.7 million electric retail customers in central Florida, including metropolitan St. Petersburg, Clearwater and the Greater Orlando area. He is responsible for advancing the company’s rate and regulatory initiatives and managing state and local regulatory and governmental relations, economic development and community affairs. Glenn has been with Duke Energy (and predecessor companies Progress Energy and Florida Power Corp.) since 1996 in positions of increasing responsibility. In his previous role as general counsel for the Florida utility operations, which he assumed in 2008, Glenn oversaw all regulatory matters affecting the Florida utility. In addition, he served as a key adviser to the Florida state president, as well as other company executive management and the board of directors. He assumed his current position in December 2012. Before joining Florida Power Corp., Glenn practiced energy law at the international law firm of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP in Washington, D.C.
He serves on the boards of the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise Florida, St. Petersburg Area
Chamber of Commerce and the Pinellas Education Foundation. He is also a resident member of the Florida Council of 100. He has served on the board of the Boys and Girls Club of the Suncoast, and is a 2011 graduate of the Leadership Florida Class XXIX and the Leadership St. Pete Class of 2004.
Glenn and his wife, Robin, have three sons and live in St. Petersburg, FL.