Reveal the Leader Within
A Leader is not a certain type of person or position of power. It is not the one at the top of the golf leader board at any specific time or the person at the top of an organisation. It is YOU. In this article we want to show you how to reveal the leader within. To give you some ideas, methods, tips that will make you think and, if you want to, enable you to reveal the leader within you.
First; What is a Leader? Ponder this question for a while.
What is a leader to you?
What image does the word leader conjure up for you?
Is it someone with charisma?
Perhaps it is someone who is able to get others to do what they want?
Or someone who is able to get individuals to do the impossible?
Is someone born a leader or are they made?
What about world leaders. Are they bred, made by their political parties or carbon copies of their idols?
It is difficult, isn’t it, to define a leader. But we all know one when we see one or are in the company of one. We would like to suggest that a leader is YOU. You have inside you the skills and abilities to lead others. All you lack is the belief, confidence in yourself and the determination to succeed.
Now think of your life.
Spend a little time answering the following questions:
What are your priorities in life?
Do you know what you want or what you need?
Quite often wants and needs are transposed and become confused. Try the following exercise:
Take a piece of A4 or letter size paper and write at the top: What I want is……….
Now write down the things that come into your head don’t edit or hesitate. It doesn’t matter how ridiculous they appear just keep writing until you feel you have exhausted all topics. After all you are the only one who is going to read them.
Now, on another piece of paper write: What I need is……………..
And repeat the process.
At the end you have a list of wants and needs look at them, think about what you have written. What are you trying to tell yourself? Are there any themes?
You should now have a rough idea of what your priorities in life are. Can you answer the following:
Where am I now?
What really drives me?
What is my passion?
Where am I going?
You now have an idea of what you believe in. What it is that really drives you and is your passion. You now have what the text books refer to as a clear vision. A vision about which you are deeply passionate. To be a successful leader all you need is zeal and enthusiasm for your passion and the capabilities to put your passion into action. Unlike the text books we are going to suggest;
1. You have the capabilities and what you don’t have you will pick up on the way. If you build your vision from your capabilities it can only limit your vision. The secret is to build your vision from your passion and then the capabilities come flooding in. The more you follow your dreams the more experience you gain.
2. You do not need influencing skills. Leadership influencing skills are many and various but most involve some form of manipulation e.g. rousing speeches, getting help from persuasive others, persuading others to do what you want but all the time pretending you are doing what they want etc. etc.
For us, the most important style is: Being an Example or a Sample. Remember actions speak louder than words….Walk your talk…… We all know that if someone does not do what they say we soon get discouraged and question their ability and credibility.
To be an effective leader you just need to live your passion. If people like what they see they follow you. You lead by setting an example for others regardless of what influencing skills you do or do not have. As Theodore Levitt, a Harvard University professor, stated, ‘Only people who believe in themselves generate believers’. All you have to do is believe in yourself.
Chrissie is a McTimoney Chiropractor. A very good chiropractor who believes passionately in what she does and the method she uses. A quiet person who lets her expertise do the talking. She rarely markets herself, other than to give lectures on her subject, but her surgery is always booked and she has a loyal following of patients. How does she get her work? It’s simple. Her patients tell their friends. If you told Chrissie that she was a leader she would disagree giving many points to the contrary. But, Chrissie always has time to listen, is always focussed on the patient and their diagnosis, is always caring and her whole being tells you, you are in confident, professional hands. The result is, people travel miles to see her. She has followers, therefore she is a leader. She lives her passion, her beliefs about the McTimoney method, and because people like what they experience they follow. Chrissie does not want to be the best in the world she just wants to give her personal best to each and every patient. To her, success is the feeling that she has done all she can to relieve the pain and suffering of her patients.
The secret Chrissie has, as well as determination, skill, passion and desire, is love for her patients and the world in general. For us, Love in Leadership is so important. Love ensures that you are not stuck in your own ego. It keeps you focussed on what you want to achieve and ensures you operate from a place of inner strength; your feelings rather than your head all the time. When you operate from a place of love you tend to really listen to others and respond to their true issues and concerns rather than manipulate the situation to get what you want. Love ensures you use such qualities as self confidence, self respect, consistency, decisiveness, integrity and honesty in your decision making.
To reveal the leader within, discover what you really believe in… what is your passion… then start talking about it. Your excitement will start to influence others and before you know it.. You have followers. You are a leader. To move forward and lead is a personal choice. It is your life. The only right answer is whether the result makes you happy.
Julie and Graham