If you are my leader, please don’t just tell me — show up and show me!
I am a passionate person and I am drawn to leaders who can express themselves with great passion. But expressing passion alone will not be sufficient for our team to be successful. We need your demonstrated leadership in the areas that you are espousing such passion.
Consider with me briefly today, three aspects of passionate leaders who are more than just verbal, they are visible:
Visible Leaders are Honestly Committed – These leaders honestly and genuinely believe in what they espouse. Their passion comes from a deep desire for others to know the joy or benefits of what they know or what they have experienced.
Visible Leaders are Open-Minded — These leaders tend to avoid dogmatic expressions in the pursuit of their passion. They do not claim to have all the answers. On the contrary, their passion is balanced with openness: they want to hear and integrate others’ points of view. Those points of view are considered and valued as much as their own.
Visible Leaders Act Out Their Passion – They walk their talk. Their day-to-day behaviors support their words and beliefs. They demonstrate that commitment with their consistent involvement in the work of the team. When the team burns the midnight oil, it is the “visible leader” who has lit the lamp for their team and visible leaders are the one to refill it with oil when it starts to run dry.
Inherent to this issue of being a visible leader is the underlying characteristic of being consistent. As cliché as it is, “Words are cheap.” The thing that is lacking in many leaders is a willingness to commit and to stay committed for the long haul. They remain committed when the tough times come and when adversity visits the team.
Real leaders with passion and a lead from the front of the pack mentality provide more than just inspiration. They do more than just cheerleading from the sidelines or provide a temporary emotional lift.
When leaders are truly passionate, yet take the time to demonstrate that passion with visible actions, people feel inspired to do more than just listen to a leader. They feel empowered to participate in the process.
What kind of leader are you?
Are you passionate in your proclamations? Are you backing that up with specific actions that those around you will identify as being aligned with your verbal assertions? One of the popular leadership quotes that many of us know all too well seems to fit:
“Few organizations rise above the level of their leader.”
Are you the limiting factor in your organizations success? Am I the one holding back my organization? Those are tough questions.