You're the CEO of a company, and someone in the…
We are all leaders.
Too many times, we picture a leader to be successful, rich, and constantly under the spotlight. We think leaders have to be CEOs, have to be older, and have to be smart. This is farther from the truth.
Anyone – you, me, he, she, can be a leader. You don’t have to have a top position or the brains to be a leader. I recently reread one of my favorite books, “Lead Without A Title by Robin Sharma”, to remind myself that too many times, we are too focused on the materialistic things. Rather, no matter what circumstances we face, we should be proud of what we are doing and the contributions that we are making to society. Being a leader to yourself is a choice, not something that needs to be granted only when you are awarded a certain status. Borrowing an example from the book, even though you may be a hotel maid, visualizing yourself as being the best at what you do only makes work much more meaningful and fun, while the rewards and opportunities will eventually head your way. Other people will recognize the work you’ve put in and the effect you are having on those around you. Make those around you feel inspired.
Actually, I lied. Being a leader really isn’t a choice.
I grew up with the privilege of having met many people and many friends. A lot of my friends have also become aspirations of who I want to be. I’ve met people who I’ve respected, people who have motivated me, and people who inspired me.
Some of them have motivated me through the way they act. How they behave around people has made me learn more on socializing with people.
Some of them have their own businesses, and are very successful and happy with where they are. They have inspired me to take risks.
I was helping some friends out with sales for a craft beer business. I remember one time when meeting a client, a manager at a popular bar/restaurant, the way he was so passionate about observing and experiencing the beers we provided was very illuminating, very different. It made me feel inspired to be just as passionate in every aspect of my work and of my life as well.
But the funny thing is, most of the time, these people don’t actually know that they were having an impact on my life.
This is what I really mean when I say we don’t really have a choice. Everyone is a leader, albeit an invisible leader. We are all influencing on other people around us whether we like it or not. People will look at you and there will always be people who admire you or want to be you or are influenced by you. You can be a janitor and there may be someone who looks up to you for your hard work and dedication. You may just be a regular employee at a firm but interns are secretly looking up to you.
I’ve had so many classmates that, based on their words and their actions, have created such a positive impact on my life. And guess what… sometimes I’ve never even spoken to them, ever (well fine, maybe like once or twice, max.). Regardless, they have had an everlasting impact on my life, and probably for my lifetime. Little things that you think are unimportant may create an everlasting impression on someone else.
This raises the point that sometimes, you may just be a leader for someone you never know. Just because she hasn’t thanked you, or complimented you, or perhaps never even talked to you, does not mean you are not impacting her.
And because of this, since leadership is something that happens to everyone, what we need to ask ourselves is how we can maximize the positive contributions by being this invisible leader. For example, you can lead by being passionate and hard working at work and in life. You can lead by being proud of whatever and whoever you are associated with and who you are in general. You can lead by always willing to take risks even when you have failed many times. These things do not go unnoticed, trust me.
So remember, everyone is an invisible leader. We never know who we may be influencing or impacting, so it’s important we be the best that we can be, and inspire everyone to be better, who can then inspire other people to be better, who can then inspire other people to be better…
How are you going to start becoming a greater invisible leader?
*featured image from gbtimes