That realization would most likely be prevalent for any leader, but especially for those who ascend for the first time to the top spot. When the word came out that Mary Barra had been chosen to be the new CEO for General Motors, I thought about when that moment will occur for her. Probably not during all of the press conferences and holiday parties and receptions…probably not during the North American International Auto Show that takes place in January. Those calendar moments keep things busy and the honeymoon adrenaline flowing. But there will be a moment when the cameras move away and she has that quiet time when she realizes the responsibility she has.
For the genuine leader, we go into leadership opportunities because there is knowledge that through leadership, there can be influence. With a positive influence, there can be impact. With an impact, there can be the ability to attract resources, to expand the influence and deeper the level of impact…which serves to grow the resources. The responsibility to grow in leadership is a big one and it has to be taken seriously. Those who constantly gripe about leadership have rarely been in the position to make organizational changing, life altering decisions. That’s a responsibility many may say is easy to do, yet few will ever have that opportunity. (Monday morning quarterbacking usually happens from people who have never been a quarterback..the same applies to criticism about most leaders. Those offering their service as critics have usually never had the leadership experience ).
This is why leadership is SO important…it carries a mountain size of responsibility regardless if you are the CEO of General Motors or the Principal of a 150 student school. The journey into leadership is full of lessons to be learned from mistakes that are made. Those lessons are intended for leaders to be better and to lead higher. In fact, we must go higher because we have that responsibility.
Now GO Lead!