Look around! If you look closely, you can see a pattern at work in every facet of life. Employees get better after their supervisors do. Kids get better after their parents do. Students get better after their teachers do. Customers get better after the salespeople do. Likewise, followers get better after their leaders do. As a leader, you impact and influence your team. If you are in no shape to lead, where does that leave them?
Effective leaders take responsibility for continuing to grow. To be a leader requires learning; so it follows that to continue to lead effectively requires continuous learning. John Maxwell states in The Leadership Handbook, “Great leaders have an engaging, almost infectious desire to keep moving forward, to generate new challenges and to live with a sense that there is more to learn and accomplish.” So, followers get better after their leaders do. What an awesome responsibility! This means that as leaders, we must maintain a teachable attitude within ourselves. Leadership and learning must go hand-in-hand.
It is wonderfully liberating to understand that to be effective leaders, we do not need to know everything! We need to stay open and continually learn and grow. It is easy to become comfortable with where you are and what you know. New and untried experiences are often uncomfortable. Yet we must move forward. It is said that the Tartar tribes of Central Asia used to have a curse they would use on their enemies. They didn’t curse them to die. Instead they would say, “May you stay in one place forever.” What a horrible thought!
I Care, Barb