October 12, 2010

Leadership Can Be Lonely

People are more easily led than driven.
David Harold Fink

If you are lucky to have a mentor, hang on to them with all you got. They are special people we need in order to move things along. If you’re lucky enough to be a mentor, take your role seriously.

You are not only guiding a career, you are helping the hundreds they will touch throughout their career.

Business is a team sport and if you choose the path of leadership, it can be a lonely road. But it can also be a fulfilling decision.

Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.
Peter Drucker

Leadership is a balance between the ego and grace. Well that’s until reality steps in. Quotas need to be met, revenue numbers hit, a competitor wins the contract and suddenly our flapless leader isn’t so helpful and nurturing.

In the corporate world, leadership roles are realized through myriad journeys. Some get the gig because they are the top sales person, others get it because someone left and they were the safe choice, the list goes on. Rarely does an organization choose its leaders purely from the perspective of leadership ability.

The only real training for leadership is leadership.
Antony Jay

If you’ve ever received a promotion within an organization you know that people start to look at you differently and you may feel a bit strange. Suddenly the angry young person with all the bright ideas is in a position to act on some of those ideas and it’s put up or shut up time.

It can be tempting - like many before you - to cover your butt, keep your head down and hang on to your gig verses making bold decisions.

Leadership is a lonely journey within a team environment but to the right person, the most rewarding career move of their lives.

And the twist - we all need to be leaders now and waiting for the corporate tap on the shoulder is not the time to begin the process.

What are your thoughts?


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