For Anything to Work, Everyone Must Be a Part of It.
To build a competent and united organization, everyone must embrace their role in making it a success. Whether it is the leader or the group member, each person has a responsibility to uphold. To neglect this duty is to reject one’s essential role within the organizational structure. This abuse negates the possibility of accomplishing long-term goals.
The absence of trusted leadership or constituent solidarity creates a divided organization. This separation hastens structural distrust and creative stagnation. A toxic environment cannot thrive and will ultimately collapse under its own disfunction.
There are many potential reasons for this discord. There may be a leadership deficit or tribal isolation and echo chamber reasoning. Are news and messages shared in narrowly defined snippets and tweets that hide rather than enlighten. Or, perhaps everyone in the organization become too tired to seek the truth or even debate it. Regardless of the cause, people will not come together until everyone shares a universal regard for one another. A sincere and shared environment made up of facts, active listening, respect, and personal responsibility.
It Starts at the Top
Every high-profile leader makes promises. They talk about inclusion and respecting the viewpoints of others. Too often their assurances and pledges last only until they secure their powerful positions. Then these unethical leaders, having attained status and influence, follow their own selfish agenda.
These false leaders promote their small successes with vigor. They shout their own praise and reward those who glorify them. Their insecurities make them claim success gained from the wisdom and sweat of others. They will then ridicule the failures of those weaker and less connected than themselves. Their weakness shows when they take responsibility for easy to achieve goals. Then they will cast blame on those who cannot accomplish the impossible tasks set for them.
An Ego Won’t Hide
As leaders flaunt their might and display their arrogance, constituents suffer. Those who believed in them to spearhead improvements become disillusioned. The supporters hopes for change are dashed by their false kingpin. They become frustrated, exhausted, and fearful. It is unlikely the egotistic leader’s hubris allows them to recognize these symptoms. If they do, they will retreat into a cocoon infested by sycophants.
Moments of crisis reveal a leader’s true character. If they possess none, their absence of resolve, respect, and empathy betrays their lack of belief in their colleagues and associates. The same people who looked to them and hoped for better lives. Those who believed in the rhetoric and promises. The devotees who put their faith and trust in someone who professed to care about them. And the committed, who kept believing but secured no help. Still, some weather the lies and remain believers. Because sometimes the delusion of hope is enough to stay the course.
A deficient leader cannot grasp one very important factor. Their uncivil policies and behavior will catch up to them. Because their power depends upon the ongoing consent of those whom they disrespect, their downfall is inevitable. And, although a persuasive leader might fool their base of support once, their follower’s loyalty will evaporate when the false leader is exposed.
Leaders and their allies try to manipulate this consent. But as failed policies and flawed strategies collapse, people’s resentment will grow. Then, when the leader can no longer cast believable blame upon others, conflicts will arise. The stumbling leader’s failures will encourage and motivate their enemies. And the base that once believed the promises will turn away. Then, the weakened leader’s adversaries and those whom they betrayed will demand and work for change.
For others, the core who trusted the most, will realize their hopes were crushed once again. They will retreat into old assumptions and believe the system conspires against them. They will feel discarded and no longer take part in the masquerade.
As these group members withdraw their consent to take part, they remove the possibility of building a unified whole. Doubting the system works for them, their negativity becomes validated. Then, they withdraw into insular beliefs and resentment. Angry, but willing to wait for the next bellicose leader that offers them a voice.
The primary difference between the autocratic tyrant and a genuine leader is respect and gratitude. The mindful leader recognizes the power and value of those they serve. Honored to be entrusted with their position, a wise leader approaches their job with humility. They recommend and promote policies that unify and elevate everyone.
Genuine leaders try to empower people. They trust in the innate goodness of humanity and believe individuals can accomplish exceptional things. These leaders have faith in people taking personal responsibility and making selfless decisions. They are confident that people want to come together and work toward a shared goal. Empathic leaders understand people’s desire to feel safe and belong to a community. Inspirational leaders want to acknowledge people and show them they matter.
It is possible
Organizations guided by responsible leadership and supported by unified members are destined for solidarity and success. A positive environment of support and inclusion fosters hope. It allows the disenfranchised and downtrodden to cast aside their hatred and fears. As these changes strengthen, everyone can embrace an optimistic outlook and become part of the solution. Although the world can be chaotic, gracious service to the whole creates a pathway to prosperity.
Wise leaders work to remove barriers to inclusion. They acknowledge that people want to better themselves, learn, and unleash the power of education. Confident leaders are unafraid to delegate responsibility and to mentor rising achievers. Their convictions allow them to praise and promote others and encourage their ambitions. Honest leaders believe in the people they serve.
Respectful leadership is not a weakness. Those who are entrusted with power and responsibility and use it to better the organization will reap rewards. Leaders who strive to serve others will have their efforts rewarded. Supporters will assign more authority to the leader who proves they will not abuse it. This flow of trust and responsibility is how shared power and responsibility works.
The Circle of Leadership
Great leadership is like the hub of a wheel. The empty center creates a supportive connection for the spokes to come together. This unity creates a powerful and productive means for moving toward a common goal. Harmony comes about when the selfless leader creates an environment of truth and fairness.
The Circle of Support
Wholehearted support from an organization’s members comes about when there is fairness and opportunity. All the spokes join as one, each given impartial recognition and value. Working together, the spokes support each other and the whole. Genuine progress is accomplished only by moving in unison.
An outstanding leader does not talk, they act. They create a supportive environment that allows everyone to excel. They trust their constituents and give them the tools and responsibility to grow. When they succeed, the leader offers them praise and gives them credit. When they fail, the leader takes responsibility and humbly tries again. Offering credit shows gratitude and encourages continued growth. Taking responsibility shows the leader’s strength of character.
Achieving goals, the people feel like they accomplished it on their own. They will then take on more responsibility and attempt to perform greater and more ambitious deeds. They will stand together, and the whole will be stronger than its parts.