Helping people towards a common goal makes you a leader. Leaders are coaches, drum majors, teachers, directors, principals, den mothers, superintendents, captains, or any other formal or informal positions. No title required.
Strong leaders considers the direction and performance of the “followership” as more important than their own performance. However, the success of the followership is bolstered or hampered by the quality of leadership.
The idea represented by a leader are more important than personality and disposition. Either consciously or subsconsciously, the members of a group/organization ask themselves, “what idea(s) does this leader represent?”
The vision of a leader is how the leader articulates her/his ideas. After understanding those ideas, the group asks, “what does this person want us to accomplish together?”
Everything begins with the leader’s vision. No matter the project or endeavor, the vision and ideas of a leader hang in the air as a perennial preamble.
Developing and articulating a vision are the first steps of intentional leadership. When these words are spoken and written, they become real. Others push back, ask questions, and ultimately help refine. A vision becomes stronger and the way forward is clearer.
Ideas and vision change over time. The visions of the group blend and influence each other. Yet, it is difficult to determine which is worse for the followership: a leader not articulating their vision/ideas or never developing them in the first place.
Without a clearly articulated vision, the group is forced to fill in the gap and is prone to conflict and confusion. With clarity, the group moves in the same direction.