Monday, 1 October 2012

You Need To Be Seen As A Leader

Many people are surprised to discover that being a Manager is markedly different from being a Leader.

A Leader is someone who can do ALL of the Managerial stuff but they have other attributes that put them head and shoulders above the others.

To be a leader means empowering people, taking risks, to be at the FOREFRONT, to be an example, to be a stabilizing force both emotionally and business wise during tough times, to be the one who rouses and stirs the emotions in people.

To be a leader means saying 'US' rather than 'ME', saying 'WE did it' and not 'I did it' and saying 'LET'S do it' rather than 'YOU do it'.

If you get it right, you don't even have to ask people to do something.  They become so part of your empowered environment that they know what needs doing and they do it, because they know YOU would.

Non verbal Leadership just means 'being there' for your employees.

In World War II Winston Churchill rallied the British people and their resolve by leading by example.  He was seen walking around and talking to the people where the heaviest damage from the bombing had been.  He inspired millions of people by being seen where the rockets and bombs had landed.

Dwight Eisenhower was always accessible to his men of all ranks and was there with the troops before the launch of the invasion of Europe.

What these people like Churchill, Eisenhower, MacArthur, Margaret Thatcher were saying was very powerful but equally important, or in some cases more, was what they were doing.

Being visible at the front, being shoulder to shoulder with their troops inspired nations. 

The definition of Leadership implies that you must be at the front, and be seen to be at the front.  If not, who are you?

The greatest Generals like Marcus Aurelius, Alexander and others did not give orders from the rear (like their opponents or 'competition') but they led their men into battle.

If you want to be a leader, be visible.  Walk the office, walk the floor, talk to your people and your customers however large your organisation.  Get out of that office and be seen.

REMEMBER: People will not follow you if you lead them in the wrong direction.  Nor will they follow you if you lead them in the right direction, but in the wrong way.

If you want to lead them right, you have to be a leader!

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