AGENDA… Positive or negative connotation? What does it mean to you? That one word can carry a lot of mixed emotions and definitions that can only be interpreted by two groups — the ones who have the agenda, and those that are the recipients of an agenda. Either way…

There is always an agenda… Every leader I know has one, and this is not a bad idea. When an agenda is seen for the overall well-being of a group, organization, the intentions are seen as positive and just maybe, enjoyable. But what happens when agendas do not follow the “positive” route? When agendas become self-serving, the negative connotation shows up and BAM!… you know what happens – trust is broken, chaos abounds, and the air is sucked out of the environment quicker than a time vacuum.


The questions today that should require you to ponder are:

How do others view the agenda you have as a leader?
Does your agenda positively or negatively impact others?
Who is your agenda for?
What are you trying to “make happen” with your agenda?

An agenda always has an end in sight. Strong leaders make their agenda open and allow everyone involved to participate. Think of it like this… As a leader, this is where WE want to go… Now let’s get everyone involved and see how we can get to that end result. Everyone knows their role, everything is clearly defined, and empowerment is seen and felt. The “after effects” works for all. If we get there, then that means I get there.

Oh, but that hidden agenda. No clarity – fuzzy, hazy, clouded… you get the idea. The one no one knows about… Yea, right… The funny thing about hidden agendas is that everyone can actually see them. Weak leaders have hidden agendas, and they manipulate others to further that agenda.

All leadership agendas connect the dots. Leaders with open agendas connect the dots for everyone to see a completed picture. Leaders whose agenda is hidden connect the dots also. The only problem is the picture they make is circle around themselves. Leadership agendas must help form an alliance instead of isolation.

Becoming a successful leader, attaining a high position in one’s career, gaining “status”… these are not bad. But all of these will ultimately deteriorate, for time is the revealer of all things, if all one does is make their agenda about themselves.

The success of an agenda will always be seen. Will it be seen on the backs of others as step-stones and footstools, or will it be seen with others on your back? Beware of leaders who make their names on the backs of others.

Remember… Think Leadership and Be For Others

©2019 J Clay Norton

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