Leadership is something that can be very hard to define sometimes. For example, the classic definition is to examine the distinction between leadership and management. In some organizations, you also need to make a distinction between leadership and directivity.
We seem to forget sometimes that leadership does not only happen at work. We bring leadership in many different aspects of our lives. As parents for example, we are leaders for our children and we may also be leaders in our community or in a sports team.
When I talk about personal leadership, I think about your ability to bring your leadership skills to all aspects of your life: from your professional life to your personal life and in everything that you involve yourself. Unfortunately, in some companies, leadership “applies” only to the people that have the right title. A good manager knows how to get the most of the leadership of the people that surround them.
BE the leader you want to see in the world!
Someone once asked me: “Steffan, I want to be a better leader. Tell me what I need to study or what I need to do.” Sometimes, in the crazy fast paced world that we live in, we look for the easy solution. We look for that magic formula that will make us a better leader. Unfortunately, there is no magic formula to become a leader!
Personal leadership is born out of many different things! It can come from outrage, love, despair or even passion or dedication for a cause.
Before trying a magic formula, start by getting to know yourself. What are your values? What is important for you? What do you wish to see in the world? Once you know these things, go out there in your daily life and BE the person you want to be. Live your values and people will decide for themselves if they want to follow you.
When I ask you to BE the person you want to be, I mean do more than just doing actions and repeating a leadership formula. I am inviting you to live and breathe your values every single day! I am inviting you to step up and act in ways that people around you will see you as a living expression of your values and beliefs. I am inviting you to go out there and make the conscious choice to step into your leadership. Face your fears, brush away your excuses, go out there and BE the leader you want to be!
- Nothing you can do will force inspiration on people, you inspire them or you don’t.
- You cannot force people to follow you, they will follow… or not.
Be consistent in your actions and what you say. Go out there and share your message and the people this resonates with will show up and they will follow you.
Make your reality happen!
In his book “Managing on the edge”, Richard Pascale defined leadership this way:
“Leadership is making happen what is not going to happen anyway.”
The statement may feel twisted but it is actually quite powerful. Bring this back to your own personal leadership in your life. Where are you holding back from making things happen? Where are you holding back from jumping in because everyone around you says it will never happen?
And now tell me what could happen? What could happen if you started taking charge and had the courage to step into your leadership? What would be different in your life? What impact would you have on the people around you?
Taking ownership of your personal leadership implies that you are ready to step up and have the courage to make things around you that were not supposed to happen, happen anyways!