Where Leadership Diamonds are Formed

Diamonds are formed and found between 60 and 120 miles deep in the ground. As an allotrope of the elegant carbon, the intense pressure and heat at this depth is critical to the formation of the diamonds that are mined at the surface today.

It’s the depth, the pressure, and the heat…

Leadership question: Where are you feeling pressure? Where do you feel under heat? I’d like to remind you today, you are not alone.

  • Napoleon was rejected by his peers in school for his family’s poverty. He devoted himself entirely to reading books, quickly rising in knowledge to secure a scholarship and command respect. He was soon regarded as the brightest in his class.
  • Abraham Lincoln had so many failures and heartbreaking setbacks on his resume that he would have been foolish to run for President. Well, he ran and he won!
  • Robinson Crusoe was written in solitude in a dark prison.
  • John Bunyan wrote Pilgrim’s Progress in the Bedford Jail- alone and broke.
  • Beethoven was almost totally deaf and burdened with great sorrow when he produced his majestic works.
  • Franklin Roosevelt, four-time President of the United States, was paralyzed from the waste down due to polio. He never gave up!
  • Oprah Winfrey was born in poverty in rural Mississippi by a single teenage mother; raped at age nine and became pregnant at age fourteen. She lost her son in infancy.
  • Nelson Mandela is a visionary leader of South Africa; he served 30 years in prison.
It’s hard to find a great leader who has not had to overcome setbacks, heartbreak, brokenness, despair, adversity, and pressure.

What is the difference between an obstacle and an opportunity?
(Answer: Our attitude towards it.)

My company, Leadership Quest, was conceived during four months of unemployment. I clearly remember sitting alone in my car, crying. I felt trapped and uncertain of my future. Something pulled me up, and forward. It was the depth of despair, the pressure, and heat forming— a diamond of leadership. It was small but has become a multifaceted gem to inspire others to their greatest potential.

What pressure are you feeling?

Don’t despise it—The heat of adversity may be taking you deep to discover your own diamond of leadership potential. Encourage yourself today, tomorrow, next week, next month, and next year. Soon, something powerful will emerge… Take it from Napoleon, Lincoln, Beethoven, Roosevelt, Oprah, and Mandela! I believe this will become your best season.

Here is to your diamond of leadership!
— Steve

As a master storyteller, Steve has unparalleled ability to communicate dynamic business and leadership truths through stories, anecdotes and humor. Harness the power of the “number one” predictor of professional success, impact, leadership, high performance and sustainable relationships in business and life. Steve’s highest rated keynote presentation.

Bring Steve to your 2018 meeting or conference! Please contact Michelle Joyce for more information on Steve’s powerful keynotes and workshops.

“The purpose of Leadership Quest is to help professionals develop their personal leadership, vision and emotional intelligence. Everyday I strive to help leaders and teams achieve their desired goals in sales productivity, leadership, time maximization, and life-balance. ”

About the Author

Steve Gutzler is the President of Leadership Quest, a Seattle-based leadership development company. Steve is a dynamic, highly-sought-after speaker who has delivered more than 2,500 presentations to a list of clients including Microsoft, Starbucks, the Seattle Seahawks, Pandora Radio, Boeing, Cisco, Starwood Corporation, the Ritz Carlton group, and the U.S. Social Security Administration. He recently was voted #1 by the readership of Huffington Post as the Most Inspirational Leader on Social Media.

A published author on leadership and emotional intelligence, Steve resides near Seattle with his wife Julie where they enjoy time with their three adult children and six grandchildren.