Being A Leader When You Are Not In Charge

Being a leader when you are not in charge: why a topic like this on What better place to address the topic? After all, great leadership begins within. Great leadership is a combination of clarity, focus, intention, energy, and creativity, and all of these are strong intuitive skills.

be a leader

 Leadership from the inside out

Is there such a thing as leadership when you are not the person in charge? What is the first thing that comes to mind? Is it competition? Could you be seen as overbearing?

Being a leader isn’t about being overwhelming, loud, aggressive, or demanding. That’s like putting all the power into one wheel of your car. The most you’re going to get is going in circles. A great leader knows how to listen, watch, and support the efforts of their team.

Focusing on Solutions instead of Problems

So then how can you be a leader even when you are not in a leadership role? By recognizing when there is a problem, and bringing to your team leader a solution instead of just a problem. Management doesn’t always know when there is a detail problem that’s affecting their bigger picture, and it’s a shift in focus for them to come to an understanding of the processes.

Bringing a solution to their attention saves them time and energy, and that can be greatly appreciated. In the times I have been a part of a team I have often received positive feedback, even a thank you, for bringing a solution, and not just a problem.

Leadership looks at the bigger picture

What does this show about you as a team member? It shows that you are alert, and willing to get the job done. It also shows that you are resourceful and respect the company resources by saving the time and energy of the team members. When it comes time for your annual review, these contributions can be a big part of your overall assessment.

Let’s clarify that while there is both long term and short term benefit to your contributions, what we give should be offered in a team-supporting way. If we contribute based upon just our personal gain, others perceive this. Without the cooperation and agreement of others there is little to fuel our collective success. Give based on the goals and desired outcome, and the personal rewards will return on many levels.

The Intuitive Side of Leadership

Great leaders invest their time and energy, and how do we do this with the greatest results? By giving our best with every moment. We don’t need to be the leader to be a leader. Start with the intuitive aspect of leadership: inner alliance, dedication, interest in success, making our lives a better place. Others will see this shift, and may follow suit. That’s the greatest leadership, leading by example.

Being A Leader When You Are Not In Charge © 2013 Estee Taschereau.

photo credit: Hamed Saber 2006

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