A Real Leader’s Greatest Weakness

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Every human being has their own personality and character traits.  No two people are ever identical in nature or function.  While it is true that most people never reach their God-given potential, it is just as true that those who do strive for great leadership roles are far from being everything they could or should be.  

It has been my personal experience after many years (over six decades) of studying, learning, receiving fine guidance and counsel from some of the biggest, brightest and best leaders in this world, and from applying and utilizing that which I have learned,…that only one man in all of human history was flawless,…was perfect,…was without mistake or error.  His  name was Jesus of Nazareth.  His life, times, wisdom, and teaching about living a truly successful life while one is alive on this earth are all recorded in the number one best selling Book in all of creation,…in all of human history,…The Holy Bible.

Now I don’t wish this discussion to be a Bible study of sorts and will not allow it to become so.  But I will tell you without a doubt or any other type  of fear or trepidation,…that no man, no one single person, or no group of people can talk about, write about, or portray in any manner the true success of any man or woman without thoroughly discussing the Creator of Mankind, God Almighty.  It simply cannot be properly done.  God and His Word and all of His Creation which includes mankind are inextricably tied together.  They are all part of the overall divinely designed plan for the world and all that is in it.  So I, therefore, must refer to God and His Laws whenever any thorough or complete discussion regarding the success of an individual or group of people is truthfully and accurately given.  The Creator always comes before The Created.  The Creator is always greater than The Created.

Real leaders are both born and developed.  Leadership is a learned skill and takes lots of committed time and effort over long periods to gain, and at which to become proficient.  Good leaders don’t just one day show up on the scene, unknown and unannounced, and immediately begin leading the masses of people. They are slowly and completely developed by sitting at the feet of great leaders for long periods of time where they can be taught to lead and then given ample opportunity to perform their learned skills.  Leadership training is really a “crock-pot” affair.  It is never in a hurry.  All great leaders are patient men and women.  They possess great compassion for all of mankind.  They possess large quantities of common sense and “street-smarts.” Leaders know people and they know how people act and/or react.  Real leaders of people are spiritually sound and well grounded in a knowledge and understanding of the Creator of the Universe and His Laws.  These are the types and kinds of knowledge and experience that are seldom taught, and don’t get learned and understood quickly.  

The truth is that most all of the true leaders of men are developed.  Only a very few are ever born as natural leaders of people.

Great leaders are teachers, trainers, and proper examples of and to other people.  You can and will be effectively able to teach other people to properly do that which you, the leader, have done for yourself.  Experience is gained from performance.  It is all part of the training and preparation for knowing what to do and how to do it.  All great leaders of people have mentors.  They have sources of knowledge, wisdom, and experience from which they continually draw.  A leader without a mentor will always make lots of foolish and some times bad or even catastrophic mistakes.  Those errors in judgment might well too soon cause the weak or under-developed leader to self-destruct.  Followers will not follow an uninformed or inexperienced leader, even if they are forced to follow them, all the way to their own inevitable demise.  Please permit me to share with you some True Truth about leading other people…Never underestimate the intelligence level of those people who are following you.  All of us have the same source of individual creation.  Everyone has a brain and with God’s help can and will learn to effectively use it.  

Most all of the followers of any given leader understand enough about human nature to realize that all men and women make mistakes.  Honest mistakes are a natural consequence of doing things or performing efforts with or without adequate preparation.  The leader who makes such type mistakes and admits it to his followers, and subsequently assumes total responsibility for the mistake and implements immediate corrective action will always be respected by his followers.  The leader who takes less than what I have just described will not be forgiven or respected by those who temporarily follow him.  Such a poor leader will not maintain his leadership role for very long.     

It would really be a nice and wonderful thing if medicine or other sciences could develop a pill of sorts,…a potion,…or even a patch that could be ingested, swallowed, or applied to the skin that would protect or entirely eliminate a leader’s greatest weakness from ever raising it’s ugly head.  Timidity, shyness, and indecision are all by themselves some of the worst personal traits and characteristics any leader could ever possess.  Boldness, responsible, availability, and decisiveness are the traits so much more desirable in a leader of men and women.

However, if a serious review of history,…world history…were to be made, one would very quickly realize that even the greatest of leaders, the best of the best, the leaders most widely hailed as significant men and women of accomplishment,…rarely are as good as politics, written accounts, and actual personal performance claim that they were.  

Everyone on this side of heaven because of the “weakness of the flesh” is far short of perfect.  We are all flawed.  Each one of us possess areas of need, want, and weakness.  It is just the way that God made each of us.  God’s Truth applies to all men and women regardless of their titles or positions.  His Word clearly tells us, no matter who we are or think we are,…“we have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.”  (See Romans 3 : 23).

One of the greatest mistakes a real leader can make is to try to manipulate, micromanage, or dither with the thoughts and actions of any of his sub-leaders or experienced followers.  Such divisive efforts taken by the leader,…will always be taken by the sub-leader as an offense, as an attempt to use the sub-leader improperly and as an indicator of the leader’s lack of respect for the sub-leader.  Any or all of these demonstrated actions work to undercut and weaken the personal relationships between a leader and his lieutenants.

A leader who does not learn this lesson well, will all too soon discover that he or she is no longer the leader…no matter what they think themselves.

The one thing that can destroy a leader and separate him from his followers is paradoxically the same thing: compromise.  The mistake such a misguided leader makes is that he wants to make everyone happy, and wrongly believes that “public opinion” or “conventional thinking” can and will win all wars.

This type of weakened leader identifies himself and demonstrates his real identity through thoughts, deeds, and actions which are riddled with insecurity, timidity, and an overall lack of confidence.  He most often seems to make the “popular” decisions rather than the “right” decisions.

There are many fine examples of such men and women recorded in the history books and biographies authored by the great scholars of our past.  But a final word of caution to all leaders and aspiring leaders…While this type of activity by a positional, manipulating, and overbearing leader can win him some battles, it will wind up causing him to lose the war.  This will culminate once his followers get sick and tired of being told what to do and how to do even the most menial of tasks.  

All leaders, hear me well…Your greatest victories will come to you when you learn and practice giving your followers a mission, an objective, a final desired result, and then getting and staying out of their way until the mission is completed.  Never lose sight of the fact that leaders gotta lead…and they always will wherever they find themselves.

Leaders lead only because their followers allow them to lead.

Leaders Gotta Lead………………….    

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