“Great leadership is like great music – it draws you in – stays with you. Leaving an imprint that lingers on…”
As a child I loved music and was fully enamored by the look and sound of the guitar. I acquired a passion for the instrument from a very young age. Even before procuring my own instrument, many an hour was spent pretending on an old tennis racket, waiting for an opportunity.
That opportunity came in my early middle school years, arriving in an off-model Fender. Not a top of the line model, but a guitar just the same. A real life guitar that I could play and learn on. A guitar of my very own.
Flashing forward to the present and a plethora of guitars later, a lot has changed. While the love for the instrument has remained, it is no longer just about acquiring a guitar. It is about the feel, the tone, the sustain, the craftsmanship, the sound.
Which, in many ways, mirrors the leadership journey…
First, you just want it.
We spend a lot of time thinking about what it will be like when we have an opportunity to lead, we practice a lot in our mind, what we will do, how we will lead, what kind of leader we will be, before the actual opportunity presents itself.
Second, you are just happy to have the chance.
Once you get the opportunity you just want to get at it. You want to get in their and lead others, to make a difference, to change the world. Your enthusiasm very much overshadows your ability. This is a time where lessons are learned and experience is gathered.
Third, it is no longer about just about having the chance, it is about how you use it.
You begin to experiment and try out different styles, expanding your leadership repertoire. Your learning and abilities as a leader are expanding and increasing. You are more aware of your leadership, gleaning lessons from other leaders as you begin to create your own style. As you hone your craft.
Fourth, your leadership becomes more intricate, you notice the tone, and feel of how your leadership amplifies out to those you lead.
It is in this stage that your leadership moves past you and really begins to focus on how it serves others, how it affects others. You become much more reflective of the tone of your leadership and how it comes across to those you lead. It is here that your leadership takes on your own sound, one that others can hear and feel. Your own tone.
For leaders must never forget…
No matter how much you learn, leadership will always remain a journey. A journey of becoming, learning and leading. A never ending cycle. Learn and lead. Learn and lead. Learn and lead. Constantly working to master your craft.
A never-ending journey of growth, of learning, of wonder, of persistence…
A journey of will…
“The tone of your leadership resonates far beyond each interaction, creating impressions, leaving imprints that often echo back to you.”