There was a time I followed a guru because he inspired me, but over time inspiration was downgraded to fear. I was disappointed with where I was led. Let me be clear: leaders aren’t better than followers. If following or implementing someone else’s vision is what feels right to you, by all means do it.
The world needs team players and team managers both. It just helps to figure out whether you’re the right person in the wrong position. You’ll do more good and feel better inside your skin when you’re in the right place in your organization–or out on your own, if it makes more sense to be the leader because you can’t follow one.
You might fit different roles in different cultures; perhaps you’re a leader at your company and a follower in your book group. When you join a company, seek out its culture. What are its tribal customs? Its ceremonial costumes? How deep in do you want to go? It’s possible to give a new job your all without giving up your mental and emotional independence. Be willing to look the part, to embrace the mission, but don’t buy the whole program if you don’t believe in it.
Whether you want to lead others or not, you can use leadership skills to get where you want to go in life and business–whether you are at the top or the bottom of an organization. Look to work with people who show leadership qualities, spend time with them, model yourself after them, ask them to mentor you. Learn from the leaders around you.
Following itself isn’t bad–it’s the following blindly that’ll get you in trouble every time. Sometimes you’ll have to pay your dues, but don’t get so sucked into a culture that you go native when your intention was to be an anthropologist.
PS: If you’re ready to 100% commit to your momentum, and you’d like to work with me personally, then attending my Business Acceleration Intensive weekend is your next step. December 3 is my LAST BAI, so definitely get on the roster now. You, me and 20 other executives. That’s it. http://BusinessAccelerationIntensive.com