Friday, January 4, 2019

4 Steps Away from Transformational Leadership

Rick Warren‘s Daily Hope podcast is a powerful force in my life.  Each and every time I listen to it, I identify more things about myself that I can improve on both in my personal life and in my life as a leader.  The other day I listened to his podcast called “How to get Closer to God”, and in the podcast he referenced  the story of the prodigal son who transformed his life once he made the decision to come home to his father.  Click here if you would like to listen to this podcast.

In order to transform your life, Rick identified four steps each person must take. Today I would like to share his four steps, but I would like to link it to transformational leadership. Since that is something that everyone in a leadership position aspires to become, I thought I would take Rick’s four steps and apply them to leadership.

1.  Get fed up
In order to be a transformational leader, you first have to be tired of the way things are. Transformation can’t occur if you’re happy with the status quo. You must yearn for a better life before you can make it better.

2. Own up
In order to be transformational leader, you have to first own up to the fact that you’re part of the reason the status quo exists. Transformational leaders don’t blame others until they have owned up to the part that they play in the organization’s current reality. No sustainable transformation can occur until the leader takes ownership of his role in making the organization what it is today

3. Offer up
In order to transform an organization, it is not enough to own up to the current reality. You must offer a viable solutions for change. Transformational leaders not only offer up their strengths but their shortcomings so that they can seek support from others to make the organization a better place for everyone.

4. Lift up
Finally, transformational leaders lift others up instead of themselves. They are selfless in their dedication to others, and they don’t seek the spotlight. They seek to put shine the light on other leaders and leaders in the making. Their moral imperative is to elevate, celebrate, and motivate others to become leaders as well.

Five or six years ago I wrote this piece called 7 Traits of a Transformational Leader. Click here for link. As I ponder the seven traits of transformational leadership and the four steps to transformational leadership, there is one thought that  I believe permeates in the mind of a transformational leader.

Am I making this place a good place or a better place?

If leaders are making this a good place then they're just trying to establish a new status quo for the organization.  Conversely, if the leader is trying to make this place better, then he will never reach his goal. He will never find a permanent destination or even establish a new status quo because transformational leaders do not desire titles or accolades but a journey down the path of self-discovery, self-actualization, and continuous improvement.

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