How to Detect a Leader vs. a Follower
A Note From The Editor
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This article is included in Entrepreneur Voices on Effective Leadership, a new book containing insights from more than 20 contributors, entrepreneurs, and thought leaders.
A recent televised new interview with Mark Cuban was a delight to watch. In particular, Cuban’s facial expressions said it all!
Lack of comprehension
There was a tremendous disconnect between him and the host regarding their varying viewpoints when it comes to doing business and accepting change. The host is old school and unwilling to embrace new ideas. Even worse, he wore a puzzled look throughout the conversation as Cuban continued to speak of the new ways we conduct business today. Frustration apparently took hold on Cuban’s end as he momentarily covered his face with this hands. Undoubtedly, he was trying to answer the remark with diplomacy.
Similar to the story above, as the more creative business people and employees express new ideas, it leaves most of their audience bewildered and for some, frightened. The scare comes from the need to re-educate in addition to dedication to current work. Most people do not want to face the dilemma or the thought they might be behind the curve. They certainly do not want to muster up the courage along with the time to learn something new.
The problem becomes seen as a threat down to the core. It is for this very reason that remarks such as, “Your idea is crazy and will never take off,” are heard.
Related: How to Act Self-Confident
Relief in sight
Should you be the creative sort who hears offensive remarks about your latest idea, smile. The nastier the critique, the greater is your potential impact to be made with the new approach. Reactions to your ideas are the best indicators of whether you are among leaders or followers. It may take years for most to recognize the merit of your project.
Related: How to Stay Positive at Work
The best action to take is to be among those who approach work similar to you. Working alone as the need arises is how leaders advance their work in record time.
Personal success indicators
Behaviors are a great indicator for deciding whether a new idea is worthwhile or if it will only waste much time. Indications of whether to move forward include:
- You review the work day ahead as you awake
- You are excited each morning to get started
- Your focus is on the outcome
The excitement increases motivation to do a good job. However, nothing is 100 percent nor does everything work well 100 percent of the time. So on those occasions that an exciting project does not work out as you anticipate, take the time to learn from the lessons to begin anew with another idea.
As an employee, are you keeping up with your daily duties plus educating yourself on changes in your industry? And if you are an entrepreneur, are you keeping up to date with approaches to social media and all else that needs to be learned? Stay abreast of what your peers are working on and what they view as important. It helps to compare notes and provide insights for one another.
Related: 5 Steps to Finding Your Next Job
As you experience success with the new strategies, share what you learned for others to succeed, too. Not only will you help many in the process, but your following will grow with a well-established personal brand in place. Your career advances as you become known as a leader in your field. The best reward is when people take the time to thank you.