Leadership isn’t always about us
Over the course of my career spanning several decades now, I have been in a myriad of leadership classes and seminars. The classes are designed to give you the tools that you need to be a good leader, especially when you are in charge of people. In almost every class I have ever been in, somewhere in the midst of the curriculum is a message about being the best that you can be. Every time I heard this it made me wonder if it was really about being the best or making sure that you are surrounding yourself with the best. Then I saw this quote and it finally hit me.
While in some sense leadership is about us as individuals, in reality it really is about everyone else. I can think of many people who were in leadership positions that refused to share their knowledge for fear that those around them would learn so much that they would outshine them and put their jobs in jeopardy. I never really understood that. My philosophy was that as my teams became better and stronger, that would ultimately reflect on me as a leader. No one is in any one position forever and a good leader builds teams that can succeed them when their time in the given role has come to an end.
In reality good teams are a common group of people that are better together. When you you combine their strength and talents and deploy them in the right places, the combination of their abilities and talent create a group that is pretty hard to beat. A good leader wants to see their team learn, grown and ultimately advance in their careers. Unfortunately, that sometimes means letting them go on to new opportunities that they have worked hard to prepare for. Teams that don’t have the opportunity to get new blood tend to get stagnant and miss out on new ways of thinking and doing things that ultimately leads to even better productivity.
Those who live a “me” philosophy in their careers may very well advance to higher positions, but they rarely garner the respect and admiration that they so wish they had. Those that work to make everyone better understand the importance of promoting the team and in turn promoting themselves without even having to call attention to themselves. At the end of the day, leadership isn’t about our being the best, it is about making everyone else the best that they can be.
Have a great day and remember to be the reason someone smiles.
Mornings with Ron is now available as a podcast at anchor.fm/morningswithron, Apple Podcase, Google Podcast, Spotify and most podcast sites.
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