“Trust only movement. Life happens at the level of events, not of words. Trust movement.” ~Alfred Adler
To be a leader is to trust change. This perhaps is one of the most critical attributes to learn that it is not about trusting others or yourself it is about trusting the nature of life and that it will evolve and change.
“True, trust necessarily carries with it uncertainties, but we must force ourselves to think about these uncertainties as possibilities and opportunities, not liabilities.” Robert C. Solomon
The leaders who get this are able to make quantum leaps for themselves and their organizations. Consider any great leader you esteem and you will find them on the edge of change. They are out leading and living on the horizon reminding others of the goal, the vision, the future. These leaders have learned to be tolerant of mistakes of others knowing it will grow better leaders and create a stronger future. This is perhaps the true risk leaders take and that is the ability to allow people to make mistakes and fix them. When people fix their own mistakes it makes them stronger and better for the organization.
“Trust is a skill, one that is an aspect of virtually all human practices, cultures, and relationships.” Robert C. Solomon
To be a leader that “manages with the movement” and leads from the front you have to be able to get out of the way. This is not always easy and here are three practices that support you in allowing others to support the vision and goal:
Grow! – Peter Drucker said, “if you not growing you are shrinking.” Decide you will focus on growth and KEEP your eye and activities on this goal. As your organization grows so too must you and your team. This is the kind of environment that engages and inspires people to their personal best because they have the opportunity to grow. Some of you may say to me, “well some people don’t want to change or grow”, and that is just not true…everybody grows, you just have to help them understand the why.
Give! – give away responsibility and accountability. The better you do this, the more you and your organization grow. Stay away from the trap that nobody will do it as well as you do… it is just not true. If you have people who show the capacity to handle responsibility expand their levels of responsibilities and allow them the ability to manage the resources to accomplish the goals. Keep this focus going so you have more people who are capable to expand with you.
“It is easy to love people when they smell good, but sometimes they slip into the manure of life and smell awful. You must love them just as much when they smell foul.” Wayne Dyer
Stop It! – don’t second guess their decisions. Focus on the goal. Their path maybe different and they will still get there. Do not undermine their decisions with your doubt, your goal is to build confident leaders. Will they make mistakes, yes… and always remember this quote from Warren Bennis, “Leaders who take risks make one or two big mistakes a year. Leaders who don’t take risks, make one or two big mistakes a year.” Do not hen peck them when a mistake is made…instead lead them by asking them what they learned, how they are going to correct it, and are there any new opportunities that have emerged because of the situation. Remember the best creative ideas have come from mistakes or tough situations.
“Trust opens up new and unimagined possibilities.” — Robert C. Solomon
Remember as a leader your job is to see the future, the goal, the possibility and let others build the road to that future. You must continue to communicate a compelling and powerful future through your passion and belief in their ability to make it happen. When you doubt them they doubt themselves and the future.
“If you want to build a ship, don’t herd people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery
Believe in your ability to show a compelling future for you and your organization and than get out of the way.
Trust the movement.