First, let’s state this as a premise for our thoughts today…

“Not everyone thinks like you.”

If you are hung up on this notion and believe that others should or even do, then trouble is already at your door.

Every leader has specific skill sets that allow them to be who they are.  This skill set can only be defined by words and actions – right or wrong as it may be. The fallacy is that many leaders go through life leading as though they are the example everyone should follow.

When we lead like this, our leadership is only supported by ourselves, and we limit leadership growth in others.

A few thoughts moving forward… Knowing who you are as a leader is important because…


As a leader, we must be aware of how we lead and understand that not everyone is going to respond. To get the most out of people, we have to be willing to understand them.  When we do, our leadership and theirs become more effective.

Situational leadership is sometimes needed, but consistency is key. No one is for the better if they are always trying to figure out what we are thinking. Think of it this way… If other people are having to try to figure out why you lead like you do, it is like looking at the seven-day forecast of the weather. Why? Because they need to plan for however the wind blows…

Find a style of leadership that works for both you and more importantly, others.  Many times, we model our leadership based on leaders we admire or the latest book we have read and therein lies the problem.  We are not them.  Be who you are based on knowing your “why” and lead by serving.

The more I listen, observe, and participate in discussions with regards to leadership, the more I realize that society does not promote the type of leadership that is for others. We are in need of an agenda that helps, not an agenda of self. Start leading by knowing who you are.

©2019 J Clay Norton

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