Leadership mastery – is there such a thing?
We will never exhaust the topic – due to its colossal role throughout history, and bearing on individuals, communities, and even nations. So is mastery of leadership even possible? I believe it is.
First, let me be clear. There is a world of difference between leadership and good leadership. It’s similar to innovation. We all want innovation, but what we’re really wanting is useful innovation, something that will bring real benefit to our lives.
In the same vein, leadership mastery is the ability to affect change by positively impacting those around us through our leadership. Here are four keys to obtaining leadership mastery.
In order to lead, you must first give yourself permission to do so. Leadership isn’t about title, degree, or a corner office. It is not the 5% of people at the top of the hierarchy or organizational chart.
Leadership is also not limited to those with charisma or glamorous personality, which few of us have. This common misconception does leadership a disservice and limits the impact it can have on the world.
Allow yourself the title of Leader. Put a forward slash at the end of your current title and add “Leader”… and see what happens. I recently received an email from a CEO who did just that with his SLT and management team. He wrote in response, “It was strangely empowering to everyone!” Trust yourself, your ability to lead, and remember that it’s not just someone else’s responsibility.
When we establish strong relationships, a safe environment is created – one that fosters trust and communication. Great teams, organizations, and families are all rooted in solid personal relationships.
When spending time with someone, allow yourself to be open and vulnerable in order to deepen the relationship. It is risky, yes. However, deep in our hearts we know how much we appreciate these traits in others. Those rare gems that are open, authentic, and real about their lives – those people we can trust.
Leadership hinges on movement. The movement of a good leader is always a gravitational pull towards people and their concerns, hopes, and dreams. Words can certainly be helpful, but nothing speaks louder or demonstrates our leadership more than action. Action towards others requires a servant’s heart – to serve others before our own needs are met. It also demands humility, to prioritize others and their needs above our own.
The more you help others get what they need, the more you’ll get what you need.
Great leaders understand that the world is a big place. That there is enough for everyone, and in helping others get what they need; there will be good fortune in return.
No one ever said leadership is easy, but the impact it can have on the lives of our co-workers, friends and family is certainly well worth the effort.