Monthly Archives: April 2010
Be a great follower and think for yourself!
Common misconception from leaders and followers “We thought, because we had power, we had wisdom.” Stephen Vincent Benét.
Don’t just follow a leader blindly, remember they are human too and are prone to making mistakes. Not all leaders are good leaders, so choose carefully whom you follow, ask questions and always think for yourself.
Leaders remember this; you are not the most important person in your organisation. A great leader does want people to think like them, rather to be able to freely think for themselves. Being in a position of leadership or management does not give anyone the right to bully or belittle those under them.
The following quote also applies to leadership “There can be no friendship without confidence, and no confidence without integrity.” Samuel Johnson.
There are very good leaders out there and very bad ones. As a follower you should always have the freedom to think for yourself, ask questions of the organisation and expect an answer, and you always have the freedom to leave. You should never be intimidated by those in leadership.
Always look to what the values of the organisation are, do they match your own? Are they modelled by the leaders? If they are not be very careful.
Is the glass half full or half empty?
There is no need to stress about the answer or what it means, but it is an opportunity to think differently.
Here are ten reasons why a half empty glass is a good thing.
- You have already enjoyed the first half
- You only want or need a small drink
- The glass could be very large so half a glass could be a big drink
- You have had enough to drink
- Half a glass is not equal to an empty glass
- You are saving the rest for later
- There is room for a “top up”
- You have not finished yet
- You have enough to share
- You know when to stop
We often see this cliché being used as a description of our perception, whether we have a positive or negative outlook on life. What we need to realise the answer has more than two options and these options can be positive, negative or neutral in nature. (The cliché also assumes that it is a drink, it could be the perfect measure for an ingredient in a recipe or anything we want it to be)
When a problem is presented do not just look at the linear solutions, look at the possibilities that could exist. Allow your brain to be creative and think out of the box. For all the problem scenarios that exist there are many solutions waiting to be discovered, innovation exists in how we provide the solution.
With a move to larger and larger cities there is a disconnection with the people who live the closest to us. This dislocation of the individual from the local area is to the detriment of society as a whole. The place that I live becomes just a place to eat and sleep, do I care what is happening next door or across the road? Do I even know their names? Yet if we, as a community, reached beyond the boundaries of our own private properties we could find a richness of friends and support networks lost in our busy world.
I am not suggesting that we live in the pockets of our neighbours, but rather make a genuine effort to get to know who they are, caring enough to say hello, smile, notice them. There have been numerous stories about people who have died and not been discovered for weeks or even months. This should never happen in any society, and wouldn’t if we were involved in our local community.
Support your local business
What are the benefits of this?
- Local businesses employing local people
- Environmental issues i.e. less of a need to drive
- Familiarity of the client to the business
- focused on community needs
(Check out the New Rules Project for more reasons to support local business.)
Support your local community groups and churches. These locally focused groups have a wealth of knowledge and understanding of what is happening in the area you live, but are often under-resourced due to an all to common focus on the city by organisations, funding agencies and local/national government.
If you support your local community, and other people support there local communities then we will see a more caring city.
Things to be aware of or do…
- Do not become so focused that new people can not come in or feel like they are intruding
- Welcome strangers
- Be open to new cultures
- Avoid gossip at all cost
- Don’t become a member of a group just to be nosey
- Get involved
- Take personal responsibility for getting to know your neighbours
- Everyone has something to contribute (old and young)
Get involved in your local community, if you need to start an interest group, go to a local church, simply say hello to a neighbour.