Leadership is the process of moving people. It is about identifying leaders, discovering their gifts and passions, and moving them forward according to their dreams and goals. Over my years of leadership, I have learned that there are five basic perspectives regarding influencing others. Maybe they resonate with you or maybe I am missing some, but regardless, here is my list.
Individually – how do you invest in people? What do the one-on-one relationships in your life look like? Do you find those conversations revolving around yourself or are you working to maximize the potential of others? An effective leader must take the time to know their team, care about their team, and invest in each team member as an individual.
Organizationally – how to you build and engage teams? Often, these happens naturally due to projects or events within an organization. However, as you are working to build a team, what do you look for? Must everybody agree with you or are you willing to bring in some outsider perspectives and some individuals who will challenge the status quo. A great leader looks for diversity within a team and engages teams that will ultimately bring a project to a successful conclusion.
Intentionally – without a clear vision or strategy, the leadership process dies. It is the responsibility to not only guard the vision, but to lead in such a way that others embrace and support the vision. If only the leader knows the vision, they are missing a huge component of influence. We all typically work with greater efficiency when we understand the “why” behind a directive. Intentionality on the part of the leader helps to keep everybody on the same page and understanding why they are doing what they are doing.
Developmentally – healthy leadership produces fruit in others. The ultimate sign of effective leadership is when those you have been leading begin to lead others. Until this happens, leadership is most likely accomplishing tasks. However, when you can release other leaders to take over projects or even move successfully to a new venture, you are seeing the developmental fruit that comes from the hard work of developing others.
Concentrically – this perspective really weaves throughout the others, but is an important principle to understand. Leadership always starts with the heart or core of an individual or organization. Momentum begins with one person who then invites others into the process and now five people are on board. As momentum grows, it ripples outward like the remnants of a pebble in a pond until the fruit of leadership overwhelms the entire organization. Start small and trust the process to move your leadership to the fringe and beyond.
So, what am I missing here? Would you add to, take away, or reframe any of these ideas?