There is a war in the Ukraine right now. Russia has through force annexed parts of the country. Because of this war and illegal annexation, The areas are attracting a lot of attention in the form of media. The other day I was listening to a reporter interview someone who was leaving a grocery store in a territory that was annexed by Russia then reclaimed by the Ukraine government. The person had no idea and was just grateful that his water worked again. This whole exchange got me thinking about leadership. I came to the conclusion that leadership is at best ceremonial.
In the UK there is a royal family, this royal family has the leadership role in title only. The royal family in the UK is ceremonial at best and has no real power over the citizens. When I begin to consider the power of leaders I can’t help but think about the term consent based leadership. In consent based leadership everyone is a leader because everyone is capable of making the right decisions. What then makes someone capable of making the right decisions? Education is what makes us capable. So instead of leaders maybe we should fill society with teachers…
Now why do people who know what the right thing to do is still not do that right thing? The reasons are not that simple, some people are in places where they cannot do the right thing. Some people are not properly motivated to do the right thing. In these instances people need changes in their situations and motivation not leadership. What happens when someone doesn’t do the right thing? Well depends on the severity of the situation. If a person is a farmer and they do not plant a crop at the right time there will not be a harvest. Then society will need to eat what is grown in the wild. Enforcement not leadership then is needed when someone does not do the right thing. Enforcement that is in accordance to the severity of the crime. The farmer missing harvest by a day should not be penalized as severely as a farmer who misses harvest by a year.
Why am I harping on this no need for leaders string? Well I am doing this because I have not seen actions of even good leaders do more harm than help.
A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.Lao Tzu
As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.Bill Gates
Leaders may not be obsolete just yet but right now the leader follower model is dead and organizations that use this model are dying. So how can we prepare ourselves for the upcoming leader to leader work place? We should educate ourselves, never stop learning. We should motivate ourselves, set some goals for yourself with deadlines (new year is coming up what a great time to do this). Finally we should believe in ourselves you don’t need a leader because you are a leader you can do this!