When did you last think about who you are, what you want? How motivated and effective do you think you would be if you worked for someone who leads with clarity and decisiveness instead of manipulation and stress? I tend to enjoy my work when I have clear goals and know what my responsibilities are.
No longer is leadership exclusively the domain of bosses and managers. Organizations are becoming more flexible as the rate of change increases. Today leadership is an activity rather than a position. Leadership entails taking responsibility for your world. It can stem from your position or role, but not necessarily. The most important question is: What part of my world am I responsible for?
This can clearly be seen in the field of software development. Self-organized teams take on responsibility, that otherwise would belong to managers, in the name of agility. In the past employees used to be told what they had to do in the mornings. That has rarely happened to me in my time as an employee. Motivation and passion are what are needed. How can we foster these two qualities?
Life can be hard
One of the hardest things about adult life is that no one really knows us and no one really cares. So we try to avoid showing the world our true selves in order to avoid pain. This behavior leads to a tremendous loss in human potential. Who knows how much value has been lost to the economy because of this behavior.
Two weeks ago Christine Neidhardt and I published the first edition of our book – “Showing up – be the leader you feel called to be”. The book helps you to practice seeing and showing yourself, and inviting others to do the same.
For example: reflect for a second on which people or events have influenced your perspective on your work most. Who or what has made the largest impact on your expectations? Which of those make you successful, which don’t? This should help you become aware of your opportunities so that you can make new decisions. More conscious decisions lead to more clarity.
Our aim is to encourage all kinds of leadership in order to activate potential. In this way we hope to encourage job creation and help foster a society that can overcome the challenges of the 21st century. Leadership is confidence.
What is a safe space?
Confidence doesn’t just fall from the sky. It is not a subject we study at school. So where can we learn it then? In safe spaces. If I am constantly worrying that people are not taking my work seriously, or even worse, if they are perhaps laughing at me, then I feel insecure. Harsh comments and comparisons, unclear expectations and stress make things even worse. They make us want to invest our energy elsewhere.
On the other hand, if we receive an invitation that communicates clarity and intention while defining boundaries and delegating responsibility and trust then we can begin to really engage. Things like open communication, a variety of perspectives and opinions flourish. New possibilities spring up in the tension. Co-creation and innovation are at home in these kinds of safe places.
Showing Up is based on a workbook from our TrustTemenos Leadership Academy, a ten-month course for leaders. This is the lesson you should have received at school. A few leadership aspects distinguish our concept from others:
The heart of the course is developing confidence and slowly but clearly discovering who we really are and what we want. This requires trust and security. The creation of this space opens up untold possibilities for all of us.
Our academy makes the space available and teaches people how to create this kind of space in their everyday lives.
We are releasing the book in small increments, every month a little bit more. You can begin the course today. The book is being printed in autumn and will be available in book stores. You can also choose your price on Leanpub. All of the different versions are contained in the price. The book is available in all common e-book formats.