Judith Umlas, senior vice president of International Institute for Learning and now an author of two books, is a strong believer in tikkun olam, or repairing the world.
In her new book, “Grateful Leadership: Using the Power of Acknowledgement to Engage All Your People and Achieve Superior Results,” she demonstrates how to create and acknowledge grateful leaders, “one CEO at a time.”
Umlas’s first book, “The Power of Acknowledgment,” was written for general audiences. But “Grateful Leadership” talks specifically to business professionals no matter where they are in the hierarchy. In her mind, the reader can be a below C level executive and still rise above water by gleaning lessons from her book.
Umlas’s strong Jewish roots – more cultural than religious – continue to motivate her in both the personal and professional areas of her life. It is this background, combined with more than 20 years of training thousands of business professionals, both locally and globally, which led her to write “Grateful Leadership.”
Umlas speaks about the need to be proactive and demonstrative as a chief executive officer and leader. It is important to show gratitude toward employees, because the return on investment is great.
“Appreciated employees stay with the job, unappreciated employees will eventually leave,” said Umlas, a Rockland County native whose husband of more than 45 years still sends her semi-weekly love letters. Such acts as this, lead to gratitude and feelings of fulfillment. This begins a feedback loop that works just as well in business as it does in love.
With a foreword written by former Trader Joe’s President Doug Rauch and profiles that include quotes and stories from well-known leaders in the fields of business, United States government, retail, finance and international business, “Grateful Leadership” provides conrete advice and examples for anyone looking to move up their corporate ladder.
Umlas geared her book toward those who are already leaders, and those who wish to become one. She mostly wanted to stress how important it is for them to give back to their employees and peers in order to achieve the greatest success.
And in Umlas mind, grateful readers equal grateful leaders.