How do you lead?

We lead through exercising mastery in something that matters to others

A recent book (Nine lies about work) makes the point that leadership isn’t a ‘thing’ because we can’t measure it and for whatever set of traits or skills or competences that are put forward as being essential, exceptions can always be found.  However, followership is a ‘thing’, we can (easily) measure it.

The authors go on to say that what makes someone follow someone else is that this other gives them confidence in an area that is important to the follower. Both Hitler and Gandhi had tens of millions of followers, they inspired confidence in their followers, albeit in very different things and with very different outcomes.

We inspire confidence in others in areas where we have achieved mastery, in other words leaders have achieved mastery in something that matters to their followers.

Yuri Krotov_summer-by-the-rivers-edge.jpg

We achieve mastery when we use a set of strengths consistently over time.  Remember that a strength is an ability which gives us joy when we exercise it.  The more we use a strength the better we feel within ourselves, the more confidence we have.

So, we develop our leadership when we can use our strengths every day, we also perform and learn at our best, too.  This is the quickest route to mastery and of course this can all be enhanced if we receive feedback on the effect our flashes of mastery are having on those around us.  We gradually see that we can inspire confidence in others and gradually we become willing to stand up and take ownership of it.

We lead from a position of inner confidence and strength inspiring confidence in others.



John Corrigan is an expert in helping individuals to bring their whole of mind to their daily life and increase their effectiveness and the effectiveness of those around them. This expertise scales from the individual to the team to the organisation. At the core of this work is the practice of encounter.  Earlier blogs can be found here.

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John Corrigan