Thursday, February 1, 2007

The Easiest Way to Lead is to Follow

Stephen Downes blogged:
...the best way to influence people is to give away your ideas, and let others take ownership!
It's rather obvious to me that if you really want to be a leader, then learn to follow well. I certainly am not a good follower, but I strive to be. I see daily many excellent followers all around me, and I long to do as well as they do! I wonder if they realise just how influential their quiet demeanors really are? Think of the heroes you emulate. Were they close-fisted bureaucrats or quiet back-stage get it done sort of people who gave it all away?

1 comment:

shields_06-07 said...

Years ago I was in sales. My manager sent me on a three day EST-like seminar. We were locked in with 20 other people. The topic, Influence Management. The idea, how to lead without leading. In other words, how can you be a manager of people when they do not report to you? The answer? At the very heart of every person is a child who wants you to know them, care about them and affirm them. Many people find themselves in a position of indirect leadership. Teachers, for example are selling ideas to students, they are leading students to success. It isn't always easy. In fact in today's world of distrust and disrespect for authority, students often resist teacher guidance. Influence by example is the key to good leadership. If students sense your joie de vie and feel your passion for a subject, they may just allow you to inspire them. So in short, I say to be a leader, be an example, embody passion, get to know what makes your students tick, seek to climb new mountains of experience. They will beg you to take them along.