In between navigating these April showers, we had an unexpected realisation last week and we thought it would make an interesting topic for the blog today.
That’s the thing about having a small business; you plan and plan, and think ahead and try to cover all bases, and then a curveball hits you in the (slightly wobbly) abs.
Our curveball: LEADERSHIP
Not the concept exactly, we could riff on that for aeons. But the word itself. You see, one of our Step Up School modules is simply entitled LEADERSHIP. It’s a great topic, a chapter in our book in fact, and actually, when we think about it, one of our pet subjects. But the attendance to the session was our lowest yet. Sob.
Luckily, the Schoolers who came were on fire, and it was a thought-provoking few hours. Anyway, afterwards, we did our usual course dissection (read: chit chat on the tube ride home), and the only answer we could come up with, as to why quite a few stayed away, was that the word LEADERSHIP frightened them off. Or maybe not frightened so much as didn’t resonate. Perhaps they’d had a “Leadership isn’t for me”, that kinda thought.
The irony is, we had structured the session to prove the exact opposite: that LEADERSHIP today is absolutely not a man in a suit at the helm of a polished boardroom table.
Some of you might have read Lorraine Candy’s recent Sunday Times Style feature about when she interviewed Oprah. If so, this concept won’t be new. In it, she explained that while she was chatting to Oprah (calm, considered and much less touchy-feely than she was expecting), about the definition of LEADERSHIP, Oprah simply said, “It’s sticking within your frequency.”
And by that, she meant just great LEADERSHIP happens when we’re just being ourselves – you just being you. It was a well-timed feature because this was the exact foundation of our LEADERSHIP session. That, and the fact that we all need to be able to imagine ourselves as the LEADERS that we already are before we can learn the nitty-gritty of people management, team building and the rest.
What we’ve realised is that LEADERSHIP is an outdated word – a word that basically scares the heebie-jeebies out of most of us. So next time around, we’ll be rebranding LEADERSHIP to VISIONING or INSPIRING, because in truth that is all that LEADERSHIP really is.
It’s being you, and being able to inspire others towards your way of thinking, whether that’s small scale (following your Insta account/buying your products) or on a bigger plain (creating a mass movement/driving lasting change).
The moral of this LEADERSHIP story: we are all already LEADERS in our own lives. So never be scared to assume the mantle.