This is a tough question, but one worth considering. Leadership expert John Maxwell says that if we say we are a leader and no one is following then we are “just taking a walk”. So would you follow you? If you say yes then write down why. And then be courageous enough to ask those you lead why they are following you? If you want to really be courageous, ask them have they ever thought of not following you and why? Assuming they answered and with authenticity, they just gave you the greatest gift of your “leadership life”. You can’t change what you don’t know. Life-giving leaders want to know.
For life-giving leaders, giving their team the right to speak into their life is one of the safest leadership moves that can be done. We all have blind spots. Others can see them much better than we can hence the phrase “blind spot”. However creating a life-giving culture that allows a leader the benefit of this precious information, takes courage and self-control. Courage to hear from those you have given permission to identify and share with you what they believe are your blind spots and the self-control to take the information and act on it with authentic humility and a grateful heart. “Blind spots” should be validated by more than one person to bring more objectivity to the issues.
Having people on your team who are courageous enough to do this for you takes a lot of relational equity. For them this is “risky business” and they must trust you as a leader. I was recently watching a “Behind the Scenes” episode of the Oprah Winfrey show. It showed Oprah going head to head with her executive producer, Sheri Salata. However, Oprah says her show never would work without a "fearless leader." "I'm at the head and right underneath me is the executive producer of this show, Sheri Salata, who is in the control room,” says Oprah. Sheri and Oprah have work together many years building that type of life-giving trust. But it is the best success insurance a life-giving leader could ever buy.
So be courageous, give it a try and remember...
Be Life Giving!