Working with organizations you meet all kinds of people. There are those who step forward with genuine interest to help and learn—and then there are those whose idea of moving forward is to step over others.
You might not recognize these people at first, because they like to talk about being of service and make a show of being obliging. But their actual agenda has nothing to do with helping anyone but with covering up the limitations of their leadership.
Here are some signs of those who are busy stepping on while they move forward.
They align themselves with others because they feel alone. They like to think that if they align themselves with leaders, that makes them leaders too. But of course it doesn’t really work that way. A true leader has merits and an inner moral compass that is reflected in everything they do. True leadership is a direct reflection of character.
They take credit because they have not accomplished much on their own. We’ve all seen it happen—a team works with intelligence, imagination, and hard work, and the person at the top of the organization takes the credit. A true leader knows in their heart that anything worthwhile is done with others, and that success is shared.
They talk like leaders because they’re trying to fake it till they make it. They may be gifted writers or speakers—but when it comes to leadership in the trenches, they wouldn’t know the first thing to do. True leaders are created in the situations that are difficult—where challenges need solutions, where problems need vision—not with words.
They grab the limelight because their corner is always dark. There’s a need for attention and deferential behavior that’s grounded in a deep need to be noticed. True leaders have a light shine on them organically. They don’t chase the light or grab it—it comes to them naturally through their enthusiasm and spirit.
If your actions are about contribution to the well-being of those you come in contact with and you are a positive force, you’re a true leader.
But if your actions are only about your own personal security and benefit at the cost of others, you’re a leader who is stepping forward while stepping on people. While you may get what you want in the short run. In the long run, character and true leadership build an enduring legacy.
Lead From Within: True leaders do not focus on their own edification and glory but on helping others to succeed. They don’t need to compensate for their limitations but instead work to overcome them.
N A T I O N A L B E S T S E L L E R
The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness
After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.
Additional Reading you might enjoy:
- 12 Successful Leadership Principles That Never Grow Old
- A Leadership Manifesto: A Guide To Greatness
- How to Succeed as A New Leader
- 12 of The Most Common Lies Leaders Tell Themselves
- 4 Proven Reasons Why Intuitive Leaders Make Great Leaders
- The One Quality Every Leader Needs To Succeed
- The Deception Trap of Leadership
Photo Credit: Getty Images
Of Lolly’s many awards and accolades, Lolly was designated a Top-50 Leadership and Management Expert by Inc. magazine. Huffington Post honored Lolly with the title of The Most Inspiring Woman in the World. Her writing has appeared in HBR, Inc.com, Fast Company (Ask The Expert), Huffington Post, and Psychology Today, and others. Her newest book, The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness has become a national bestseller.