When it comes to your quality of life there is one thing that is certain: YOU ATTRACT BASED ON HOW MUCH EFFORT YOU PUT IN TO YOURSELF.
Of course, you can say you have high standards, a high quality of living which is NOT as the same as a high quality of life.
Stop kidding yourself now and accept the fact that if you keep living a life that is not set to a higher quality then you will only attract those individuals at the mediocre or medium-high quality and there are plenty of them.
The higher you set your quality of life, then the fewer, more select individuals will you attract. When their quality of life matters as much as your level of a higher quality of life then you can connect a level that is more refined and filtered instead of one that is just going through the motions. Failing to elevate your quality of life you will find yourself complaining about your lack of ability to find higher quality individuals to connect with.
When it comes to connecting with others, YOU set the standard and you are the ONLY one that allows those that are at or below the standard to enter your life. If you want higher quality to enter your life then you alone have to not only set the standard but keep the standard the standard others have to exceed. Otherwise, why bother?
Welcome to the tenth and final installment of the 10 Things You Do Not Know About Leadership. In this weekly, series I cover topics that tend to be overlooked, forgotten, or completely misunderstood. By sharing with you, it is my hope and belief that I help in eradicating many of the misconceptions that come with leadership.
LEADERSHIP MEANS MAKING NEW LEADERS
Did you know the true purpose of a leader is to make new leaders?
Again, let’s not confuse managers with leaders. They are two different iterations of the same individual. I have always stood by this premise: Any leader can be a manager but NOT every manager can be a leader.
That’s why we have Great Leaders and bad managers. There is no such thing as a bad leader but there is such a thing as a great manager. See where I am going with this?
While bad managers should never even consider creating future bad managers, yet far too many are creating them right now as we speak. Good managers know to find those diamonds in the rough and help mold them into future good managers. Unfortunately, I have seen this far too often and those bad managers will take under their wing the individuals that are, for lack of better terms, suck ups, kiss ass, the bully, the friend, friend of a friend or worse still a child of a friend thus perpetuating the continued growth and development of bad managers.
Try to prove me wrong and I bet you cannot.
Leaders this is where you have to step in. For the most part, good leaders know the difference between who can do the job and who can bully their way through the job.
Leaders of all types create leaders. I say this because to be a leader your followers recognize you as one. As it is your followers that make you the leader. It is your followers that will do and deliver what you ask of them.
It is also your followers that will promote you to others. It is through them promoting you that you will find new followers and future leaders.
As a current or future leader, it is through leading by example that you will gain the follower but it will also be how you create new leaders. In some cases, you will know that you are creating new leaders as those individuals will begin to emulate you. In other cases, their change from follower to new leader will be subtle. That change will be so subtle that you will not recognize it until after they have their own set of followers.
Always remember and never forget, all Leaders exists not to create more followers but to make leaders and that’s the bottom line.
The best and fastest way is to make future leaders is to be the best most authentic self you can be. This does not mean you have to be on your best behavior. Of course, we all know that being on your best behavior never works. It means that you have to be true to yourself 100% of the time. People will appreciate the individual that pulls no punches. The individual that is not afraid to question you or call anyone out on their bullshit.
Leaders, you will face many challenges over the course of your life. Remember as the song I DON’T WANT YOUR LOVE by Duran Duran says “I cannot sit down, I can’t shut my mouth but when you understand me, you might feel good around me, now back it up!”
Thus, it is through remaining TRUE to yourself that others will recognize, gain a deeper understanding, and gravitate towards you. Then they will want to be like you. Of course, for any number of reasons those that follow you will want to step up and take the challenge of becoming a leader.
When it comes to making, creating, inspiring, empowering, and encouraging new future leader, current leaders you join that elite group of leaders, of Great Leaders that include the likes of General George Patton, President George Washington, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, and other such individuals.
You join their ranks because you are creating new leaders.
Welcome to the ninth installment of the 10 Things You Do Not Know About Leadership. In this weekly, series I cover topics that tend to be overlooked, forgotten, or completely misunderstood. By sharing with you, it is my hope and belief that I help in eradicating many of the misconceptions that come with leadership.
#9 Leadership is Lonely
Even the most popular of all great leaders were some of the loneliest people ever. To the outsiders it might seem like a popularity contest but only those in it to look good or go through the motions may be popular but most will never become GREAT LEADERS.
Greatness comes at a price. A price far too many are not prepared to pay.
As the song LIMELIGHT by RUSH (click here to view video on YouTube) goes “Cast in this unlikely role, Ill-equipped to act with insufficient tact. One must put up barriers to keep oneself intact.”
It can be difficult to always be in the limelight.
Those barriers the song refers to are there to protect the leader and strict adherence in order keep the sanity of all involved in check. Ensuring separation between the personal and professional lives is also maintained.
As maintaining separation can tag you as someone that is not understood, as you never imitate others. As you are not mimicking others because you prefer to blaze your own trail a s opposed to following someone who is also following someone else. Where’s the fun in that? Blaze your own trail, cut your own path, be the point man and get out there.
Again, when it comes to blazing your own trail, cutting your own path, being the point man, you are out in front. There is no one else in front of you. Remember, if there was someone in front of you then you are NOT leading but instead following.
Remember when it comes to leadership being lonely, comes from not being easily understood. People that are not ready to lead or be led will find those that are ready to lead or are already leading others a bit difficult to understand and follow.
Leaders, current and future, please keep in mind that their inability to understand you is not your fault, that is on them. But, know that you are going to have your work cut out for your and that is to be expected because as a leader’s job is never done.
Let me break it down. You work for an organization and there is a new manager coming on board of course, anyone new will bring their own ideas and concepts to the new job. As expected, those that have been with the company a while, usually are a hesitant to change. Thus, their defenses are up and their “go-to” is that they cannot understand you and what you are trying to do. So, the leader gets isolated. While it is not a good thing when it happens, it happens nonetheless.
Because you are unique & you never imitate others will find it difficult to associate you with someone or something familiar to them.
Leaders are a different breed of individuals; they are not afraid to be alone when it comes to leading. They understand that while the mission must be accomplished and goals must be set, they also know that nothing should get in the way of doing what must be done.
Therefore, when leaders are doing their thing, others will find it different and will tend to give those leaders the space and time whether they need it or not. However, the difference is what will lead to the leader’s isolation whether imposed by others or self-imposed by the leader.
Another sad reality is that while people will come to you for advice, arbitration, problem solving, or as a sounding board they seldom include you.
While they recognize you as an authority figure, as a subject matter expert they do so at a level that makes them think twice about including you in their social situations, gatherings, and other such events that are outside of the organization.
That’s alright. As a Leader, you should never put yourself in a position where you can take from the people you are leading. This means never letting your followers get into any situation where they owe you.
As a leader, they have to look to you without any hesitation or reservation. You are the first person they turn to in times of trouble, crisis or concern.
Yet, when a leader crosses the very fine line that separates leaders from followers then all the confidence and support for that leader goes out the window. I have seen many leaders become bad managers when they crossed that line only to find themselves with more “friends” than actual followers.
It is for that reason, that all the great leaders have to keep a tight rein on what influences them and also who they can and cannot influence. In an age where have hundreds and thousands of followers is all the rage, but how much direct impact do leaders have on those in that circle of concern?
To be honest, little to none. So, those things that impact our lives are much smaller than the circle of SOCIAL INFLUENCE.
The things that impact our lives and the lives of others are in the circle of concern and that circle is small and intentionally kept small.
You do a good job of separating yourself from those you lead. My circle of concern is what impacts me the most and that circle is so very small. That circle of concern includes 12 people. My wife, my children, my mother, my brothers, and my in-laws, plus two of the greatest friends I have. Two of the longest lasting friendships I have ever had and that has lasted over 35 years. Yes, just two friends. Two Army buddies.
Everyone else sits somewhere inside that shrinking and ever fading circle of influence. Because, leaders want to lead others, especially in the good times and of course, in the bad times. Any leader worth their salt will ensure that the separation between influence and concern stays in place.
Ensure that fine line is not only visible but reinforced and reminded constantly and consistently both on and off duty. Ensure that you do give a little but do not overdo it, enjoy a little recreation time with them but do not let it get out of hand.
For example, once a quarter go out with the team where the first round is on you and then leave. Once a year, have a holiday gathering but then leave. Being a leader is a lonely position but sharing a laugh, a pint, or breaking bread outside of the office makes it bearable and of course helps set the boundaries.
Always remember and never forget that because you chose to lead them and they made you their leader then give them the respect they deserve even if it means there will be times that you are lonely but also remember, with followers you are never alone.