Action, not Position

Action, not Position

“You don’t need a title to be a leader in life. And the simple fact of having a title won’t make you a leader. I’ve found that everyone has the opportunity to lead, every day. It doesn’t matter what your position is, or how long you’ve worked at your job, whether you help to run your family, a PTA committee, or a Fortune 1000 company. Anyone at any level can learn and help to shape or influence the world around them.”

So says Mark Sanborn who wrote a book rightly titled, ‘You Don’t Need a Title to Be a Leader.’ I agree with him. The length of your title does not determine the effectiveness of your leadership. There are many people who do not have titles but make a positive difference in others’ lives. Leadership is about making that difference. It is about affecting people’s attitudes, and positively influencing them to make right decisions in life.A good leader is one who improves the welfare of his followers. What matters is not the position, but the action one takes to make other lives better.

While the Pharisaic leaders ‘love to be greeted in the marketplaces and to have men call them “Rabbi,”’ good leaders love to serve others. They do not say, ‘Address me by my title.’ They are aware that this is a dangerous demand in leadership. It results into unhealthy gaps on the team. It creates a distance between the leader and the followers, making it impossible for him to establish fruitful relationships. Such a leader misses out on the effective power of the team; after all, people do not love to be reminded that someone else is more important than them. When you force or kindly remind others to address you by your title, you commit leadership suicide. You kill the potential impact of your leadership. Outside healthy relationships, nothing works out.


Source: Samuel A. Bakutana (2012) Leadership worth the Name. Kampala: Integrity Publishers.

The 7 Deadly Statements Every Leader Should Avoid


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