In my own personal experience, I had developed an idea of what leaders need to do. A leader must have a vision of where things are going. A leader needs to be able to generate support for that vision. Finally, a leader needs to be hands on, be an example and be someone who people want to follow.
That seemed simple enough to me, until someone explained it in far fewer words and made a lot of sense immediately. He simple listed the three things a leader must do:
- Know the way
- Show the way
- Go the way
That’s it! It makes for a simple checklist. But then again that doesn’t make it easy to do!
What Does It Mean?
Let’s break it down just a little bit:
- Know the way – This is all about having that vision, knowing where you are going, having a plan. This sets you up to be a lead the way.
- Show the way – This is about gaining support for your vision by selling others on your ideas. Your ideas can be the best, but if you cannot articulate them clearly and disseminate them to the right people through the right channels, they will never be implemented.
- Go the way – This is where you personally get into action and into implementation mode. You don’t just have an idea, articulate it and walk away. You are sold on it, as well. So much so that you want to lead the way to make it happen.
I love simplicity. This simple checklist will help you determine if you are ready to lead the charge and be a leader.
Think of your situation, whether your project, position, or even with something personal. Do you know the way? Have you showed the way? Are you going the way? If the answer is no at any one of those questions, go back and do some more work until you can check that box!
This post is part of the series: Countdown to Leadership
- Four Styles of Leadership
- Three Essentials for Proactive Leaders
- Two Simple Actions to Become a Leader
- The One Essential for Genuine Leadership