What is a good leader? I would define a good leader as humble, servant-like, a listener, a teacher, wise counsel, willing to admit mistakes / short-comings, a sower of seeds, a learner… oh, but the list goes on. But did you see that? I said a learner. Contrary to popular belief – leaders have NOT already learned everything. That’s right: true leaders are still learning. And if they feel they already know it all then it’s VERY CLEAR that they still have something to learn.
A leader must FIRST lead him or herself.
It sounds backwards, but lets consider this:
Stumbling blocks are evident of a leader without self-discipline.
So I’ll say it again – a leader must first lead him or herself.
Leaders cannot be healthy or effective leaders if their own stumbling blocks are in their way. Period. Is their ego in the way? Are their own goals in the way of truly guiding those they are leading? Do they have ulterior motives for the attention / limelight that comes along with a leadership role? Have they positioned themselves next to other leaders solely to elevate themselves?
Am I throwing down some truth bombs today? Did I step on any toes? (Shoot – I hope so!) But hey, it’s a little painful for me too. (sheesh)
So let’s look at the steps healthy leaders take on a regular basis as they continue to grow –
- Leaders take time to learn, especially listening to and accepting feedback from others (positive AND negative)
- Leaders are not the smartest person in the room
- Leaders take time to take care of stumbling blocks
- Leaders have mentors
- Leaders are readers
What are YOU reading? And has it challenged you to be a better PERSON? A better spouse, co-worker, teammate, friend, leader?