Harve Mogul on leadership: “Many people need to be taught leadership.”

featured_leader_harve_mogui1Are there ?born? leaders? We put that question to Harve Mogul, president and chief executive of United Way of Miami-Dade since 1991. ?Sure, some people through their personalities innately have the assurance and self-awareness to be a natural leader,? he says. ?But many people need to be taught leadership skills.?Mr. Mogul reports that he is in the second category. ?I was more of a created leader,? he says candidly. ?My primary leadership training happened when I was in the Peace Corps. I needed to step up and I was taught how to make things happen.?Making things happen is certainly what Mr. Mogul is doing for United Way of Miami-Dade. Under his leadership, the local organization has earned national recognition as one of the leading United Ways and non-profits in the country.United Way of Miami-Dade is frequently cited for excellence in its major gift and fundraising programs, diversity efforts, emergency responsiveness and other areas including their Center for Excellence in Early Education and their Center for Financial Stability that addresses economic hardships facing individuals and families.Mr. Mogul has been a United Way professional since 1973, also serving at United Ways in Baltimore, MD; Cleveland, OH; Pittsburgh, PA; and, Winston-Salem, NC.

Motivation is especially important to him as he is responsible for not only a team of paid employees but hundreds of volunteers.

?A major source of motivation for employees is, of course, their paycheck but that incentive doesn?t apply to volunteers,? he says. ?A leader of volunteers has to figure out what motivates them and see that they are fulfilled in what they do.?

As a campaign director for Ketchum, Inc., Mr. Mogul helped plan the national campaign to raise $100 million for the U.S. Holocaust Memorial and Museum in Washington D.C. Prior to that, he served in the U.S. Peace Corps, taught fifth grade and worked with community organizations.

Mr. Mogul serves on a number of national United Way committees and is a member of the United Way of Florida Board. He serves on the boards of the Zoological Society of Florida and the Early Learning Coalition, as a trustee of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce, as a member of the Orange Bowl Committee, and the Miami-Dade County Public School Superintendent’s Business Advisory Council.

Mr. Mogul earned his bachelor and master’s degrees from the University of Maryland. He is a recipient of Miami Coalition of Christian and Jews Humanitarian Award and Mercy Hospital’s Monsignor Bryan O. Walsh Humanitarian Award. He resides in Coral Gables, FL, with his wife Alesia.

Mr. Mogul shares more insight into leadership.

Witnessing good–and bad–examples of leadership over the years has shown him a great deal, Mr. Mogul says. He adds that he has especially learned from inept people in leadership roles.

?I would see a leader doing things horribly wrong and I would think, ?I?m never going to be like Ralph when I?m in charge,?? he says with a chuckle. ?That is excellent training. Of course, when I got into leadership positions, I started to see what Ralph was up against and was tempted to react the same way. But I had to stop myself and think of ways to truly motivate people and get things done.?

Mr. Mogul says that to be an effective leader in organizations, government and businesses, one has to…

… overcome fear. ?Being in charge means being able to risk making a bad decision. You have to accept the fear of faipng in order to go for a big idea.?

… not worry about being a pleaser. ?If you want to be loved and embraced, you might not be leadership material. A leader has to make tough decisions and those don?t always make you popular.

… go beyond your ego. ?I?ve seen some people with big egos be terrific leaders but those are the people who think about more than their own ego. The good of the organization or business comes first.?

… be directional in thinking. ?Set your sight on the goal for your team and figure out how to get there, step by step.?

Mr. Mogul says that in looking for emerging leaders within a company or organization, it pays to look at people who have the trust and appreciation of their co-workers. ?The best leaders of tomorrow are those who have the tenacity to get the job down and have the confidence to move forward,? he adds.

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