I’m always saying there are a lot of bad leaders and almost every day I have it proven to me. And yet, I think that being in leadership is a great thing, and wish more people were ready to embrace it and use it to their advantage and the benefit of others. Why? I have 5 reasons, and here they are:
1. You’re in the know more often than not. Sometimes you’re in the know because you’re at a level where you might have to help make some decisions. Maybe you’re in the know because you’re the one putting things into action. In any case, it’s rare that you’re shocked or surprised by anything someone else comes up with.
2. You have the ability to make changes. True, some people are scared of change, but if you’re not one of those people being on the front line of change means you’re ready to make a difference in both the business and the lives of others. If those changes are positive then it’s all good, but if those changes have to be negative you’ll have the opportunity to figure out how to deliver bad news in a kind way.
3. Your “work” changes. If anyone who’s a leader says their job is boring, they’re not doing anything. Although I wasn’t all that crazy about lots of meetings I was thrilled to have every day be something different. Sometimes I created the circumstances, sometimes they came my way. Thing is, when everything was going well I never rested on laurels but tried to figure out what we could do better or what problems might be coming that I could head off.
4. Your time isn’t being watched as much. Freedom to come and go is a blessing, even if you’re in one of those jobs where you’re sometimes working 12 to 16 hour days. Even in a high pressure job you get to decide when you’re going to eat, when you’re going to take a break, who you’re going to talk to, which project is most important… as long as you’re getting things done and most of them are positive you’ll be left alone.
5. Perks. Let’s face it, the higher you go the more perks you get. Money isn’t everything; trust me on this one. When I was a director I might work 12 to 14 hours one day and then work only 4 to 6 the next. I could take time off and not use my vacation hours if it was only a day, and there were no worries if I couldn’t make it in because of inclement weather because I’d just dial in and work from home. If vendors came in I could take a longer than normal lunch and not have anyone clocking my time because it was work related. If I wanted to go to trade or networking meetings that were related to the job… you get the picture.
True, leadership can be a scary proposition, and it’s risky because leaders are more apt to lose their jobs because it’s easier getting rid of one person than a bunch of people (unless it’s cost effective) but no one grows in any venue without some risks.
So, does this make you think of leadership in a different way?