5 Thing To Consider Before Saying “I Should Be A Leader”

I’m ready to lead…says who?

  • …your experience?
  • …your knowledge?
  • …your degree?
  • …your performance?

I must confess when I became a “leader”, I wasn’t ready at all. I actually sucked at it. I didn’t really start leading until 2012. And yet, I had direct reports since 2007.

I hear many people asking to lead because of their subject matter expertise or because that’s the next thing to put on their resume. I see too many of them thinking they can lead better than their leaders, and yet, they don’t even know how to set expectations. I know I didn’t.

You think you are ready to lead?

Here are five (5) things to think about.

  1. Show me you think other people first.
    • Genuinely placing others first is about service.
    • Your bias is to make decisions based on the benefit of everyone not yourself.
  2. Show me you are continuously learning
    • You grow and get better because you want to lead others to a better place based on what they need not what you want.
    • Once you stop growing, you stop leading.
  3. Show me you can hold yourself accountable.
    • This is taking responsibility for your role in everything whether someone is tracking you or not.
    • This also includes, at certain times, doing things that you may consider ‘not your job’.
  4. Show me you are willing to pay the price to do the right thing.
    • This is not about being “right” or “wrong” but about having the courage to make the right decision whether it is popular or not.
    • Many people fight for “being right” but they won’t for the right decision.
  5. Show me others voluntarily seek your opinion on business and personal matters.
    • This is a sign others are trusting your opinion on aspects beyond your technical expertise.
    • It also shows your influence extends beyond the power that comes with the position you hold.

Where does your title, expertise, degree, or performance fall into the items above?

Leadership is a privilege not something we are entitled to. I should not have been ‘leading’ in 2007.



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