The Four Powers of Courageous Leaders
The courage of leadership is seldom seen and never understood by those who choose safety over adventure.
Real courage is a decision made without fanfare.
Courageous leadership is the power to:
#1. Live purpose-driven instead of fear-driven.
Successful leaders run-toward. Running-from is fear-driven leadership. Running-toward is purpose driven leadership.
You constantly choose between running-from and running-toward. Success is found the more you run-toward purpose and the less you run-from.
Fear is most useful when it shows you where to go.
I have found the fear of failure useful motivation. But fear leaves you exhausted eventually.
“Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.” Hellen Keller
#2. Bring your best self again after falling short.
“Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” Brené Brown
Those who don’t fall short are reaching too low. But falling short often teaches people to play it safe next time.
Grit is the courage to put yourself out there after learning from failure.
Falling short is useful when:
- Relationships are strengthened.
- Purpose is clarified.
- Self-awareness is enriched.
#3. Serve others when others serve themselves.
It stings to develop people who leave because YOU helped equip them for new opportunities. But the alternative is retention of the unmotivated and ill equipped.
Disappointment is motivation to pull back. But self-protection usually shrinks potential and narrows opportunity.
#4. Build new relationships after established relationships weaken.
You will have a few relationships that endure. Many will not. Release disappointment or disappointment will shrink your leadership.
Successful leaders deliver results THROUGH relationships. Leaders who don’t connect need carrots and sticks to deliver results.
The courage of leadership is the resolve to protect yourself less.
What are the practices of fearful leaders?
What are the practices of courageous leaders?
1 through 4 are enabling, not empowering.
Evasion gets you nothing, but it’s opposite.
Fear, grit, service, and “self preservation” only get you their opposites … desire, uncaring, narcissism, self immolation.
Be careful out there.
As you know, I’ve been traveling and not responding much. But I must say that you should come out of your shell.
Be more “care” ful.
One of use is off here. I think this is one of your best post Dan. EVER! Still digesting.
If I had to boil leadership down to one essential, invaluable trait, it would be “moral courage.” Without moral courage, it will be difficult for even the most otherwise-skilled leader to succeed.
Dan, as someone who would very likely be dead without having relied on 1-4…thank you. I led a very difficult life early in adulthood and (whether I quite knew it at the time) without these things I would definitely not be where I am…and quite possibly not be at all.
They paved the road for everything my life is right now and I won’t complain a bit about where I’m at.
Again, thank you.
#1. Live purpose-driven instead of fear-driven. If you live this one the others 2-4 typically fall into place. Too often these days leaders and followers run fear-driven not with purpose. Living with Purpose does not mean you always win but it (if you allow it) can mean you always grow and always get better at your craft. Do the “right thing”, build relationships and be honest with those relationships.
@ Rurbane What the heck?
This article was a boost in my arm today! Thanks Dan!
Having grit & not necessarily “allowing” myself to fall short but “allowing” myself to pull up my boot straps when I have fallen short and learn &/or change course has kept me going! I’m learning to be a “learning focused leader”
Ahwright, then. Halfway there!
Just an FYI, for the past few weeks, I’ve been unable to successfully follow the links you are posting. When I looked into it, this appears to be because the link you are providing to the articles has an http: preface (which works for your main page), but the actual blog posts use https: so you can’t get there from here. I wanted to point this out as I love your blog, and wouldn’t want to see casual readers get discouraged when the link doesn’t immediately lead to the blog post. 😊 All the best,