The Ground Floor of Leadership
I’ve often mentioned the criticism of personal development that it is self-centered and seeks only to help an individual grow without always putting that growth in the context of a greater world. It is important to keep this criticism in mind because often it is very true. Through personal development, the opportunity for a person to “get theirs” no matter how it affects other people is always presents.
Many people will operate this way; many people, acting on the desire to advance their careers, will, for example, move into management positions to achieve higher pay and status without a genuine care for people. I would suggest that seeking leadership without personal development will likely be problematic. And looking at it from the other end, personal development will lead to leadership, but not necessarily through those formal Moves such as taking on a management role at work.
Globally-conscious personal development and leadership are inextricably linked. You cannot seek to do something differently than the mainstream and not, at some point, be a leader. Through your loud, flamboyant voice, people will hear and see who you are. And through your quiet example, the simple demonstration of your values, people will also hear and see who you are. Many people will perceive your difference as an invitation to follow you. This much is out of your control; at times you will become a leader in this way without your consent and possibly without your knowledge.
Personal Development and Communal Leadership
This is the ground floor of leadership. By being different in the world, as we all are, your very example will be perceived as an act of leadership.
This raises two important points:
- If being a leader is going to happen regardless of your actions, is it not the right thing to do to focus on developing your leadership abilities so as to best serve the world around you?
- And given point number one, is it not the right thing to do to embrace leadership loudly and proudly instead of only relying on those quiet, informal moments of perceived leadership?
Toward Salient Moves’ mission of elevating humanity, it is necessary for us to provide and discuss leadership topics. Without these discussions, the call to project personal development into the world would be incomplete.
Simply, I do want you to live your best life and for someone to be at their best requires leadership. This is true because “best” cannot be achieved in isolation. “Best” is a relational term; it is a communal condition, not just a personal one.
As much as we strive to achieve our own dreams, we also need to extend a helping hand for those next dreamers. We must be a community of leaders.