Not all leaders can lead like Gandhi, Lincoln, Churchill, or Jesus. Surprisingly, Jesus described himself as a follower.
He said things like:
- I do not seek my own will but the will of the Father.
- I have not spoken of my own authority.
You can’t lead if you don’t follow.
Authority is derived from following a vision that attracts followers. Vision is more important than character. Hitler was a leader.
I’m not encouraging you to be a low-character leader. But people with low character can lead if they articulate compelling vision. In other words,
Liars can lead, at least for awhile. But,
you can’t lead without a vision.
Others see where leaders are going and choose to follow.
Regardless of what you think of Jesus, he thought of himself as a leader. He said things like, “Follow me,” and people did.
Leaders are followers and followers are leaders.
A leader who follows:
Leaders follow a vision that requires followers. The greater the vision the more necessary and compelling the call for followers.
What or who you follow
determines who follows you.
If you want to lead, above all else, know where you’re going. All leaders must have a destination in mind. How will the world be better if others follow you?
Other factors that attract followers:
- Capacity to communicate the vision.
- Confidence others have in your ability to lead them toward the vision.
- Capability to help others see themselves in the vision. When Jesus called followers he said, “I will make you fishers of men…” The call became about them.
Where do you fall on the tension between vision as a group activity or a leader activity?
How can leaders attract followers?