Why Leadership is Not Just About the Leader

I recently had a conversation with one of my colleagues that sparked an insightful discussion regarding leadership. We were examining various leadership strengths demonstrated by highly successful leaders, and started talking about the importance of attracting, recruiting, inspiring, and retaining excellent people within a team or organization.

A person, regardless of title, is not a true leader unless they are influencing and impacting others. A person, regardless of title, is not a true leader unless there is someone or something to lead.

An individual can be extremely intelligent and have great ideas and intentions, but if no one is
interested or willing to listen, follow, or help pursue those ideas and make them a reality – there will be little or no influence. And without influence, leadership simply cannot and does not exist.

That is why it is critical that a true leader be able to attract, engage, and retain followers. Leaders must be able to get people on board and inspire passion about a cause, idea or goal. Leadership starts with influence, and influence often starts with just one person.

Leaders will not make an impact on the world unless they first make an impression on one person.

Leaders will not be heard by the world unless their words first affect one person.

Leaders will not rouse the world to action unless their actions first inspire one person.

Leadership does not hinge on how intelligent or wise the leader is; leadership hinges on how well the leader can impact and influence others.

Who is that one person you can influence today?

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