We can all agree or should, at least, that leadership is not about popularity. Oh, but how many “leaders,” think and lead that way.  You know them…

What begins as, hopefully, a genuine desire to serve others in leadership soon can become nothing more than an act of impressing others. If a leader’s leadership depends on the applause and approval of others, the genuineness, or lack of, is so apparent, people get blindsided because of it. And there lies the problem….

I read something the other day about popularity being similar to a yo-yo. I thought it was funny because we all know some yo-yos. Yo-yo up, yo-yo down. Now, it has been a while since I toyed around with a yo-yo, but as I reflect, I can definitely see how the analogy takes true. As the yo-yo goes down, gravity takes over, everything is natural. As the yo-yo comes back up, it is drawn back with a force of having to get back to the top.

As I thought more about popularity and the yo-yo, I transferred the concept to leadership. Does your leadership, naturally work, or are you leading because of a controlling force? And the most critical question to answer today is, “Is that controlling force your wanting to be liked?” When things are going well, we strut and swag; when not, we drop our head and mope. When your wanting to be liked becomes the “want of your day,” nothing good happens. It makes you miserable (it should) and others around you miserable.

Let people like you because they see true leadership in you. It seems that a reoccurring theme in my blogs is talking about “being for others.” I think we should; why would we not? But it is tough to be for others when we are for ourselves first. It goes back to a thought I had the other day… “Finding value in what we know instead of what we think carries greater leadership responsibility.” Lead because you know… If we do not, how can we ask for society to grow to be better leaders? Be popular becasue you are respected, not the other way around. Bottom line… Do not be a yo-yo leader!

Remember… Think Leadership and Be For Others

©2020 J Clay Norton

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