"Boss vs. Leader" Motivational Canvas Art by IKONICK
Hate to break it to you, but leadership is pretty damn simple: Lead by example.
Whether you’re leading a group of coworkers, a unit of soldiers, or a peewee football team, your ability to influence and motivate the many toward a common goal depends on the example you set.
The benefits of teamwork are clear. We've all heard the expression: If you want to go fast, go alone; if you want to go far, go together. When multiple, diverse skill sets are assembled, the unit as a whole becomes more effective. It was one of humankind’s first lessons. It goes back to our tribal days when early nomads learned success and survival came easier when the group was united as one.
But it takes someone with guidance and insight to rally the troops and inspire collaboration. So how does the tribe choose who to follow? It comes down to leadership style. Boss vs. Leader.
Great leaders show team members what is expected of them by doing it themselves. Not only that, but because they are responsible for the success of the group as a whole, a good leader understands the importance of developing the individuals. Former General Electric CEO Jack Welch said it best: "Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others."
On the other side of the coin, there is the "boss" who merely barks orders and relies on their own authority to motivate the team. Maybe you've had a boss like that at a previous job. (Maybe you have one now. Our condolences...) The unfortunate truth is tons of people in positions of power don't deserve the influence they have.
Here's the test: If there was no punishment for defiance, a true leader's team would still follow them, while a boss's would walk out at the first chance. That's because the leader inspires by merit, not title alone. That’s what earns long term loyalty.
This piece is for the captains, the coaches, the commanding officers, the C-Level executives, and the parents simply leading the way for their children. A simple image with a powerful message. Leadership goes beyond the team, it's a constant dedication to embodying the example you want others to follow. Commit to that, and you’ll go far.