Over the past twenty years, we’ve experienced change that is different from that ever experienced in history. This change isn’t the result of cloud computing, social media, or the advances in medicine: it’s the result of leaders inspiring people to evoke change in others.
And to evoke change, there are five truths that leaders and entrepreneurs should accept in order to have the most impact.
Those you influence will mimic your gaze.
“The task of the leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been.” — Henry Kissinger
As a leader, it’s your responsibility to look in a direction that you want to go. The path doesn’t always need to be crystal clear — you just need to be capable of traveling in that direction. If you don’t know where to look, no one else will know either. If you’re looking down all the time, those you influence will do the same.
You don’t need to always have the answers.
“No man will make a great leader who wants to do it all himself or get all the credit for doing it.” — Andrew Carnegie
The best leaders aren’t all-knowing deities. Instead, they understand what it takes to inspire others to discover new things and reach higher. It’s your role to equip others with the resources they need to become the best they can be in both life and business.
Value trumps profit.
“Entrepreneurial profit is the expression of the value of what the entrepreneur contributes to production. — Joseph Schumpeter
The benefit that you bring to those you influence and the qualitative measures of impact that your influence has on the world are far more valuable than what shows up on the spreadsheet or on the bank statement. While profit is a strong indicator of strong influence and an obvious necessity in business, profit derived from inauthentic forms of influence holds no true, lasting value.
Connections trump networks.
“The key to successful leadership today is influence, not authority.” — Ken Blanchard
The size of a leader’s contact list has little value against the size of a leader’s true, authentic connections. There’s a reciprocal relationship when you’re influenced by someone that you value. These connections serve as a metric for your ability to lead others and it’s hard proof that the work you’re doing is having an impact on others.
Leadership is a practice, not a quality.
“Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting and, most importantly, a way of communicating.” — Simon Sinek
Leadership is an art, not a science. Leadership is a skill that needs to be practiced and refined through experience and experiments. It’s critical that you recognize your influence not as a role or position, but as a privilege to practice a very well-respected art-form that isn’t easily mastered.
This article has been edited and condensed.
Timothy Frie is an entrepreneur and blogger. He is committed to helping others become the best they can be in life and business by expressing their Truth. On his blog at www.timfrie.com, Timothy writes candidly about the truths of entrepreneurship, strategy, and overcoming obstacles in life and business. Connect with @frietimothy on Twitter.
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