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Good Leadership Is Priceless
As a boy, consumer activist Ralph Nader remembers his parents quizzing him about the cost of groceries. They asked him the cost of a carton of eggs, a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk, and a bag of potatoes. Each time, Nader answered his parents correctly. Then, they asked him the price of the breeze on his face, the sun on his shoulder, and the reflection of his face in a lake.
Nader learned in that moment that the important things in life are priceless. No surprise, Ralph Nader turned his activism toward issues of safety and environmental protection, where priceless is the standard. He became one of the most well-known and effective consumer advocates the world has ever seen.
Many of the best things in leadership are equally priceless. The timeless gifts leaders give and receive are infinite: the deep connection we create with others, the strength others feel from our confidence, the candid feedback that changes the arc of a colleague’s life, the inspiration that enables others to continue fighting through adversity.
The importance of leadership cannot be overstated. Leadership, in its greatest display, makes people and situations better. The Greek word for the gift of leadership is proistemi, which means to assist, protect, and care for others. Leadership changes lives. That is the very definition of priceless.