Surely you’ve heard this phrase: lead, follow or get out of my way!
I believe two roles, leadership and followership, often get twisted around.
Figuring out if you are a leader or follower is a reality-check.
First, look over your shoulder.
Is anyone following you?
Following your lead?
If not, look ahead.
See if you are following someone, is the right someone?
If you aren’t seeing anyone in either direction, are you leader without followers, follower without a leader or are you someone who just got out of the way?
Or, possibly you are a lost and/or in self-propelled neutrality …
I’m wondering too if this is something which overtakes as they age, which is not to say they don’t need to keep on leading or following as they once did, but I wonder if many reach the point of not caring much one way or the other. I feel I’m moving in that direction and it concerns me a bit. I wonder if I’m getting lazy – or just more artfully selective.
But my primary concern on this issue relates to those self-employed, gig-economy folks who are their own boss, their leaders are virtual and their following is intermittent because working alone in a virtual world eliminates so much human contact and ‘working together’ in a real face-to-face way. Not so much that people are hiding their leadership or followership skills, but because they aren’t giving themselves an opportunity to lead or follow – and because they are isolated, they don’t have to get out of anyone’s way …
We are in a real-time connection with political and big-corporation leaders because they are in the news, the 24/7 cycle which reveals their failings or their lack of backbone for us to gloat about. Too little attention seems paid to good quiet leadership – and even less is paid to hard working loyal followership. When we know we are leading there is little doubt. When we are thinking, caring, contributing and following good leadership that is a form of leadership too. It is servant leadership. It is mostly unheralded, and too often dismissed as ‘just worker bees doing their jobs’ but it is perhaps the best form of leadership we get to see – doing the smart caring leader-ly things without concern for who gets the credit.
P.S. … many thanks for calls, emails and texts about my speech contest wins; I wasn’t bragging (OK, maybe a little) but mostly I was observing and sharing the creation process I went though
Glad you did so well! Looks like I will be up and running on April 1. Just working on the last touch ups on my website. Hope you are well, MK, Calgary, AB
Congratulations Mark! I love your writing, TA, Calgary, AB
Good luck in the competition! So great you enjoy it instead of having to work through the fear of speaking!, SF, Lethbridge, AB
Hi Mark, Yes, you were a blast last night. Certainly saw another side of you .. the female side. And you stayed in character really well. A stronger close would help. Were you running out of time? It was fun. Good luck going forward, CD, Calgary, AB
Ah, the adrenaline junkie! It’s wonderful to take those inspirations and thoughts and form into a fantastic speech. You have experience points just from writing this inspiring musing each and every day. Go conquer your fears and grab the next level, YH, Calgary, AB