0 Leadership, to a dear friend

Leader-vs-Boss-640px
Two friends are speaking to each other about leadership.
One wise who thinks before acting, one who takes action but doesn’t think.
———
One claims:
“I am the leader, we must do it my way! I’m the leader!”
The wise one asks:
“What have you done in your life except put potatoes in a pan and put sauce on a plate? How does that reflect leadership?”
The first one replies:
“I’ve decided to be a leader! No one knows better than me… I don’t need to study anything. I’ll just impose my ideas on people, and they’ll accept it.”
The wise one responds:
“How do you know that no one knows better than you?
Do you know everyone? And, how are you going to lead people if they are all wrong?
It’ll be like herding cats. You can’t lead people without them being right too.”.
To which the first one responds:
“They’ll do what I tell them, and I’ll make a profit.”
The wise one, intrigued at the definition given,  replies:
“Leadership is not about taking all the power. Leadership is about empowering those around you with the power that they give you. If you are greedy, they’ll take their power back. Leadership is about picking the smartest people and surrounding yourself with the most effective team possible.”
The first, agitatedly talks back:
“I’ll be at the top, and they’ll respect my position if I’m at the top, people can’t take away your power if you’re the leader. It’s about power.”
The wise one, amused:
“Tyranny is a house of cards! You cannot succeed without others. You cannot succeed if you don’t respect your public, you will not be respected if you don’t show respect. If you force people they’ll push back. Are you willing to fight with your own team?”
The first, red in the face:
“I’ll do anything I need to do.”
The wise one, bemused:
“So you have no morals or values, but you claim to be a leader? You are not wise, but you want to lead others? You are not caring, yet you want others to care for you? You are not loving, yet want to be loved? You’re not willing to give, only willing to take? Tell me, where are you going to start?”
The first snaps back, visibly lost:

“I’ll just do it, it’ll happen. Slap my name up on the wall and make me the leader”

The wise one corrects:
“The boss.. not the leader!”
———

 

This discussion is essentially the exchange I get with a close friend of mine. They take action consistently, but don’t think much. They’re convinced that they are right no matter what, refuse to study anything, refuse to show doubt or that they don’t know. They’re completely lost. Yet they claim to be the leader.
People who claim leadership, are like people claiming to be AlphaMales yet walk around being assholes to others.

Leadership is about taking care of those around you, leadership is about EQ and knowing when to hold your ground. Leadership is about empowering those around you (not under your position) to better places in themselves. It’s giving them the tools they need to succeed in being leaders themselves. It’s not about control. Its about relinquishing all form of control over people and events. Its about being respectful, having tough love ( yes, arguing is sometimes important when we are absolutely sure we’re right). It’s about guiding your people from where they are to where they want to go. Showing them what they are capable. Giving them confidence, but also making them doubt in order to question whats right.

Being obstinate about being in charge, being a leader, being in control… its not being a leader. Its being a boss. the fundamental difference in this, is that a boss tells people what to do, micromanages them, stresses results, creates motivation with energy.
A leader inspires change, listens, cares, isn’t always right, isn’t in a position of power.

A leader guides.

A list of leaders who you can inspire yourself from.

-Bill Gates.
-Greta Thunberg.
-Steve Wozniak.
-Rosa Parks.
-Mahatma Gandhi.
-Dr. Seuss.
-Frederic Chopin.
-Barack Obama.
-Warren Buffet.
-Ray Dalio.
-Eleanor Roosevelt
-Steven Spielberg.
-Tim Ferriss.
A TedTalk I really like about leadership is one by Bob Davids where he explains the fundamental difference between the rapport leaders have with people, and boss’s have with their inferiors:

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