“Leadership isn’t a position, it’s a process.” John Maxwell
Over the years it’s been my pleasure to work with more students and teachers than I am able to count. My life is good. During that time there is one thing that has always troubled me. So many people have the incorrect notion (strictly my opinion) that leaders are elected or chosen, and that leaders are loud or extroverted.
I say “hogwash!” Leadership has nothing to do with either trait. It may help sometimes to be outgoing. It may even help to have the support of enough people to garner the votes to be elected. But neither is a pre-requisite to being a leader. The world is full of loud, elected officials in leadership positions. I’m sure that everyone can think of more than a few that hardly qualify as great examples of leaders. How often have you thought that someone you know would make a great leader if only they weren’t so shy or quiet?
One of my favorite TEDTalks is delivered by Dave Meslin. In his presentation, “The Antidote to Apathy” he talks about why so many people don’t see themselves as leaders. He points out that in many movies the hero is chosen by a prophecy or by receiving a mark on the forehead. He then goes on to explain that leadership is an on-going process. It is collective, imperfect and voluntary.
Leadership comes from with-in. Leadership begins when someone has a vision for the world that is so important to them, that they take action even when they haven’t been invited or elected to be a leader. Leadership happens when you decide for yourself, not when someone else decides for you. If you’re reading this tip for the day, then you’ve already made that decision for yourself. Congratulations and welcome to leadership.
Mr. Mike Walsh