You show up for work and there are company officials waiting for you at the door. They have very serious looks on their faces and this concerns you greatly. Your mind races thinking of anything you could have done to warrant such a welcome to another day at the office.
After asking you to step into an adjacent office, you nervously, but politely ask, “What is this about?”
The most senior looking person in the group asks you to sit down and then begins to explain. Apparently, you have been accused of being a leader. Several members of your team have brought it to the attention of upper management that you are doing “leadery” things around the office. They say they have evidence.
Evidence is a Good Thing
I recently kicked off a speech to a large audience of senior sales leaders with this short introduction; it got a laugh. But then, when I asked, “If you were accused of being a leader, would there be enough evidence to convict you?” the laughter ceased. Concerned looks around the room told me that I might have hit a little close to home.
One gentleman made a motion that he was exempt because he did not have the title of sales manager. Motion denied I proclaimed.
Another person made a motion that they had only been in leadership (with a title) a few weeks. Motion denied I yelled again!! This was starting to be fun!
Yet another motion was brought to the floor by someone claiming that even though they had the title of a leader they actually did not have people reporting to them at the moment. It was obvious they should be exempt. You guessed it…motion DENIED!
Leadership is Influence
What about you? If you were accused of being a leader would there be enough evidence to convict you? I certainly hope so. What would some of that evidence be? If you are leaning on your title, or your tenure, or the number of people reporting to you, I suspect an acquittal. Leadership is about your ability to influence others and happens regardless of your title, your tenure or your team.
Take 10 minutes right now to write down the evidence you would bring to ensure a conviction. Be honest with yourself. If you have doubts ask those closest to you how they see you. At home, at work, in the community.
Here’s to your conviction!!
Photo Credit – FreeDigitalPhotos.net – Photo by S. Vuono