True leaders want to have an impact. The whole point of leadership is to influence others positively. Some leaders prepare diligently for the opportunities leadership offers, while others work hard to improve the daily skills critical for their leadership success. Luckily, very few leaders are completely ill-suited for the task of leading others.
We are all at different points in learning the science and artistry of great leadership. But while we’re working on getting better, people are waiting on us to lead. No one is ever perfectly ready to lead. Instead, we push through and do our best with the skills we have developed. Because so many people depend on our leadership, we step up. We owe it to every leader who rose to the occasion for us to do the same for others. If you’re a highly skilled leader, the obligation is even higher. The poet W.H. Auden said it best when he wrote, “You owe it to all of us to get on with what you’re good at.”
If leadership is all about making people and situations better, the time is now to put a little muscle into that choice. As legendary NFL coach Tom Landry liked to say, the job is “to get people to do what they don’t want to do in order to achieve what they want to achieve.”
Stop waiting for others to show up and lead. Get to it. Everyone is waiting on you. You won’t disappoint them.