The following is an excerpt from Robert’s latest book 'How to Make Leadership FUN!' Robert will be presenting his sought after seminars 'How to Make Communication FUN!', 'How to Make Customer Service FUN!' and 'How to Make Leadership FUN!' at the Dance Teacher Web Conference and Expo this summer.
Leadership - A Position Well Defined
All who have accomplished great things have had a great aim, have fixed their gaze on a goal which was high, one which sometimes seemed impossible.
- Orison Swett Marden
If someone asked you to define what a leader is, what words would you use to do so?
Here’s a start. A leader is someone, any one of us, who has the ability to inspire and motivate, to organize and influence others. A leader must be concerned with follow through because getting people to take action can also be a big part of what leadership involves.
A leader must be brave enough to take the first steps and show others that it’s safe and advisable to follow. Making a fresh set of footsteps so that others can take the same path has a lot to do with what being an effective leader is all about. Being brave enough to take a chance, knowing that you might indeed win or lose is what leadership is all about.
Every day is a challenge. Each day you have the choice to accept the issues that lie before you. Are you strong and confident enough to lead yourself through it? Leadership is a quality and trait that we use more than we know. Often it’s associated with business or politics and is elevated to an international status. At the core of what it is to become a world leader are the very same things that you and I have as well. There is no difference; there is no separation. It’s all about the path that we choose to get to where we’re going and where we want and hope to be.
Things You Should Consider As a Leader
Nothing would be done at all if we waited until we could do it so well that no one could find fault with it.
- John Henry
It’s important not to think of leadership as something that is temporary. It’s not something you should apply to a certain situation without taking it into the rest of your life, for the rest of your life. Effective and FUN leadership should be constant and ever present. To lead is an ongoing daily process by which we, and those who come into contact with us, should grow and constantly learn from. It’s a developmental process and you should always strive to improve upon the way you led yesterday. There’s always something new and wonderful to learn when it comes to the process of leadership.
Leadership will always be. It doesn’t have a beginning or an end. It is in a constant process of becoming, just like our lives and the lessons we learn and grow from. In fact, it could very well be that leadership has more to do with our lives from day to day than we originally thought.
Be Inspiring, Charismatic and Passionate
Difficulties mastered are opportunities won.
- Winston Churchill
A leader needs to know what motivating people is all about. Being motivational, inspiring people and being passionate and charismatic about you mission can move people to do all kinds of things. Without passion in your voice and in your soul, people may be motivated to do nothing more than sit on their seats and not move an inch from there. You want people to be on your side, to do your urging and to create something wonderful and positive together. To do that, you have to provide the energy and drive to move them into action. Having your team members feel your passion is half the battle. If they can feel and see where you’re coming from, they are more likely to join together to get the job done efficiently and with FUN in mind. It has to come from you first. You have to model the energy, drive and behavior required to move forward in a positive direction.
Be a Listener
To be an effective leader, you must be a good listener. Remember, leading isn’t about the leader talking all the time; a lot of the time it has to do with listening. Think of the information you can find out by listening. If you’re unclear about the direction you wish to move, listening to those who are also involved in your journey can lead to successful results.
People listen in different ways. Some truly listen with an open mind and an open heart. They not only hear the words that are being shared with them but they are also able to feel where the person speaking is truly coming from. Other people listen for a short while and then jump right in, interrupting the message to once again fill the space with their own words, totally losing the benefit of what listening can really be.
Leading with FUN is all about being the best listener you can be. You can find out amazing things about those you are leading if you take the necessary time to hear what they have to say. Take it in, process it and see how you can give back to them in a way that is truly meaningful and transformational. The world would be in a much better place if we all took the time to listen to one another. To respond to any situation as a leader, you have to listen first.
Follow Your Heart
Follow Your Heart…It Knows the Way
- Robert Landau
Do what you think and know in your heart of hearts to be right. If you listen to your heart, you can’t go wrong. Another good technique is to put your feet in others’ shoes. Would you follow a leader like yourself? What would you change to make things better? Following your heart can help you remain true to your goals. Are your goals realistic and fair? Are you treating people in a manner that is synonymous with being an effective and FUN leader? Ask within and let your heart lead the way. Your heart, or the part of you that ‘knows’ deep within, can be the most effective leader of all. It’s an energy we can all tap anytime we want because it is all a part of who we are and how we should operate on a daily basis. If more leaders followed their hearts and not some other agendas, think of how much better our life experience would truly be! Follow your heart — it knows the way.