Are you a leader in a hurry? Are you rushing to lead? Do you feel urgency to “get your people up to speed?”
Those are all normal circumstances for many leaders, particularly new leaders. But here’s a word of caution. If you go too fast, if you get too far out in front of your people, if you’re dragging them along more than pulling them along you might not be leading them at all.
You may want to consider slowing down to speed up your leadership potential. If your people can only see your back it makes it hard for them to hear what you’re saying. If your people are constantly looking at your back it will be hard for you to show them that you care for them.
If you never slow down enough for your people to catch up then when you do eventually turn around you’ll discover there is no one there. You will have lost the opportunity to lead.
Inexperienced leaders often feel that leadership requires them to be out front at all times. More experienced and successful leaders would tell you that you lead from the middle at times. Other times you’ll have more success actually leading from the rear.
Living out front all the time makes it harder to connect with your people. It separates you from them and only provides you with a one dimensional view of their capabilities. It doesn’t take long for your people to believe you’re disconnected from their world and they are most likely right about that.
It’s tough to coach from out front. The farther out front you are the tougher it is. You’ll discover it’s far more effective to coach your people when you’re along side of them. Your closeness will indicate you care and make it much harder for your people to claim you don’t understand what they are going through.
Sometimes your people will need a push and they only place you can push them when you’re out front is to the rear. To push them forward you must be leading them from the rear. It takes an Authentic Leader to let their people be out front but out front is where the real growth takes place.
Look around. Are some of your people along side of you? Are some of them in front of you? Are they all behind you? Are some of them way behind you? Are all of them way way behind you?
If you don’t like the answers to those questions then perhaps you need to slow down a bit and realize that leading people isn’t a sprint, it’s more like a marathon. It takes perseverance and stamina and heart.
Do you have what it takes to authentically lead? Slow down a bit and consider your answer to that question before rushing to the front of the pack.