I’ve been thinking about this coming election and the issue of leadership. Two words immediately come to mind—cooperation and dialogue. How does any leader ever hope to arrive at creative problem-solving, possible consensus, or any meaningful degree of agreement without understanding these words and the importance of how they relate to each other. Please note I am only interested in sharing what I know to be true about leadership and not recommending a candidate.
Over many years, I’ve worked closely with young people with little or no experience in any field. If I hired them, it was because I recognized the student in them. I’ve always been attracted to those with potential. When I worked with experts in their chosen fields, I found they also had to accept that they were students and eager to grow. Otherwise, our working together would be wasted.
Because of my work with other entrepreneurs and professionals, I discovered that leaders create the environment, not employees. And, as I’ve repeatedly stated, leaders are their own worst enemy. I realize there’s a good reason why so little of this truth has been exposed. Being a messenger is a dangerous business. Have you read Machiavelli’s “The Prince” lately?
The lesson learned is that how leadership power is exerted makes all the difference in how those dependent on that power react. The environment the leader creates ripples all the way down the line and results from their relationship and communication with those dependent on their power and influence. This is true whether the power is in the hands of a parent, teacher, business person, or government leader. Dialogue and cooperation must go hand in hand if there is to be growth and solutions. Keep that in mind when you choose and be sure to vote!