Do all of us count the cost when we accept the mantle of leadership? I mean do we really count the cost when weighed against the conflict, misunderstandings and ultimately the potential persecution from those we have a charge to “lead-well” while in our care. I believe many of us do not and move into a place of leadership ill-prepared and armed only with information from Universities, books, certifications and maybe even an internship or two.
Leading with a Limp
In the book “Leading with a Limp” the author suggests that crises serve to remind us of just how fragile a hold a leader has on order, structure and control as it relates to follower decisions and ultimately outcomes. This realization can lead to a tenuous balance between confidence in your decisions to move forward or seeking safety in the retreat to status-quo leadership.
Rejecting the Status-Quo
Today, as we celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King…one of the greatest civil rights leaders of all time, I offer to you that we cannot retreat into the safety of status-quo, but instead boldly count the cost of what our leadership requires and stand at the ready for our followers despite conflict, misunderstandings and guaranteed persecution. If Dr. King had retreated to a place of status-quo, there is no guarantee that our society would have advanced to where we are today. Therefore, his ultimate sacrifice was not in vain and serves as a great example to count the cost and weigh the long-term impact of what it means to lead others well even when there is ultimately no guarantee that things will end in your favor.
After all, sometimes the true test of leadership is protecting the well-being of others, which necessitates the possibility of you leaving yourself unprotected in the process. If you have not already, please stop by and leave a comment or post on my Facebook Page and share what counting the cost of leading others means to you.
Point of Clarity Quote
“Control is not leadership; management is not leadership; leadership is leadership. If you seek to lead, invest at least 50% of your time in leading yourself—your own purpose, ethics, principles, motivation, conduct. Invest at least 20% leading those with authority over you and 15% leading your peers.”