“People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.”
- John C. Maxwell
First, be a Leader
Today’s quote is a short reminder to anyone in a position of authority – if you want “buy in” for your vision, you first need people to buy into YOU. In short, you need to be a true leader before you can lead. Can you achieve compliance without being a leader? Yes. But compliance will never be as effective, productive or profitable as being inspired. And for that, you need buy-in.
How do your people see you? Are you conscious of the reality that the way people see you affects how they see your plans?
This is where brutal self-reflection comes to your aid. Be honest with yourself about your leadership skills and how others perceive you. Remember that the indicator of successful leadership is whether your people are inspired – you have to look to others to determine whether you are a leader. If you are not getting buy-in, is the problem the plan? Or is it you?
If you have the sneaking suspicion that your leadership may need work, then you are on the right road – even good leaders are always working on their leadership abilities. So how do you become a better leader?
Again, brutal self-reflection comes to our aid: Step 1 to being a better leader is to cultivate a habit of brutal self-reflection. Without this skill, no other tips matter.
Step 2 is to continually study, learn and improve. The internet is full of “Tips to Become a Better Leader!”, but start with the basics. During just this past week we covered quotes from a number of well-respected historical figures. Look back at our list of links below, and remember the tip from Peter Drucker: focus on doing the right things, not just doing things right!
- Monday - Leadership vs Management. Peter Drucker
- Tuesday - What is Leadership? Dwight D. Eisenhower
- Wednesday - Am I a Leader? John Quincy Adams
- Thursday - What does Good Leadership Require? Aristotle
- Friday - Leaders are Always Learning. JFK
- Saturday – First, Be a Leader. John C. Maxwell
About John C. Maxwell: An evangelical Christian pastor and author, John C. Maxwell is famous for his series of books on the topic of leadership, as well as the associated materials, courses and training that have spun off from the success of his books.