Updated: Sep 11
How to Get, Share, & Give It Away
You have heard it said that leadership is influence, that is, "the capacity to have an effect" on others.
I always marvel at leadership influence because when you strip it down to its basic element, it boils down to the capacity to have grown, sane, capable people that have options, choose to forgo all other options in that situation, in order to align with you and yours.
This is powerful.
Many leaders exercise this leadership power to influence decisions in their own, their people's, and their organizations' favor. And many others don't, and are unable to effect much influence even with their leadership titles.
Today's 360 Leadership Success newsletter shows you how you can get, share, and give away your leadership power to influence greater outcomes for you, your teams, your organization, and beyond.
1.How to Get Leadership Power
“Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position.”
Thank goodness you don't need herculean strength to exercise your leadership power, or many of us would be doomed before the start whistle blows.
The three prerequisites to getting leadership power are:
Show you have convictions and the courage to stand by them.
i. What are the values expected of a leader in this context?
(Just to be sure we are on the same wavelength, by "leader", we mean an ethical one).
ii. What are the behaviors (words, actions, attitudes) expected of a leader?
Build character as the foundational block to building your leadership power.
Prove that you have the knowledge, skills, and experience to get the job done.
i. What knowledge, skills, and experience are expected of a leader in this role?
ii. How can I increase my effectiveness at showing competence for this role?
It does not cut it to be ethical, yet incompetent. Grow your leadership power by showing that you are the right person for the role.
Show you can empathetically connect H2H (Human-to-Human) so that people feel they can relate with, and rely on you as their champion.
i. What interpersonal skills are expected of a leader in this situation?
ii. How can I increase my effectiveness at connecting with others?
The war on influence is won or lost at human connection. Genuinely showing that you see, care, and champion others make up the pillar to establishing your leadership power.
2.Share Leadership Power
“Leaders become great not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others.”
-John C. Maxwell.
Because you are one person with finite time, energy, and resources, it is in everyone's best interest that rather than hoard, you share leadership power. But we know that knowing whom to trust with what responsibility is not easy to tell.
Below are three keys to sharing leadership power.
Make effort to know who you can trust with what kind of engagement.
i. What character, competence, and connection do I need in others to trust and engage them for specific roles?
ii. How do I assess people for expected behaviors (words, actions, attitudes)?
Engaging others is the first level to knowing others and choosing whom to share leadership power with.
Support others with the knowledge, skills, and experience to get the job done.
i. How do I support those chosen to consistently show expected behaviors (words, actions, attitudes)?
You share leadership power by giving them the information, and tools they need to effectively perform.
Share access, resources, and power with others.
i. What access, resources, and power do they need to succeed?
ii. How can I clear the path so that they can obtain them?
Empowering others is not only inviting them to the table, but giving them everything they need to make sound decisions.
3.How to Give Away Leadership Power
“Hire people who are better than you are, then leave them to get on with it... look for people who will aim for the remarkable, who will not settle for the routine”
One of Dr. Myles Munroe's is famous quotes is: "Leadership Success is measured by the success of your successor."
He is also known to say that the first task of a leader is to identify and groom their successor.
The greatest impact you can have on others, and legacy you can leave, is to make yourself irrelevant. Run your race and finish well, knowing you have prepared others to continue the great work you started.
Here are three ways to give away leadership power to make room for successors to carry on the vision.
Start making yourself irrelevant by delegating roles and responsibilities to others.
i. What roles and responsibilities can I delegate to others?
ii. What do I need to put in place to effectively delegate to them?
Delegating roles and responsibilities is the first step to giving away leadership power to others.
Make room for others' ideas, methods, and leadership by not insisting on having things done your way.
i. How can I let go of my own way to align with others' leading?
Deferring to others who may approach things differently, but still be able to deliver results, is a sign that you are ready to give away leadership power.
Stand with the people you have proven. Give them your leadership power when theirs is in question.
i. Where will they face hurdles and need my leadership power to overcome them?
ii. What do I need to do to leverage my leadership power in their favor?
There is no greater show of trust, loyalty, and faithfulness than giving away leadership power by defending others in their presence, and especially, in their absence.
“Leadership is the power of one harnessing the power of many.”
-John C. Maxwell.