Friday, October 22, 2010

A Leader, A Follower or A Changemaker ?

Today was quite an intresting day. Met one of my old friend after years. After hours of talking about how our lives changed after leaving school, he came to the topic about his work and future plans and how one as an individual has dreams to change the rest. Oddly enough the topic came round to whether leadership is something you are born with or whether it can be developed. Ok so maybe it wasnt so odd that we did land up at this doorstep ,but it did strike a cord somewhere and I am sure I heard some bells ringing in the distance. What created this sudden overwhelming feeling was that I suddenly realized how little I was and how little I knew of the world beyond my usual life..
Thats when I started to wonder ''am I a changemaker? Am I exposed enough to create systems that would have massive impact or for that matter do I have enough wisdom to help others?'' And I am sure that there are others who feel the same. So it basically boils down to one simple question- Can I make a difference?
My personal belief is that the world comprises of two sets of beings. The leaders and then theres the followers. Sometimes its hard to accept certain truths about oneself but an honest analysis would help you decide which one you belong to. Initially ,I had this mindset that the leaders are always far more superior to the followers and somehow landed up equating the latter with donkeys(read less IQ). But over a period of time ive come to realize that life isnt always black and white and similarly there is no set parameter for intelligence. A brilliant mathematician could be a kitchen disaster . You cant be like everybody and everybody cant be like you. The rigidity about your role, your abilities move on with time and circumstances. So its not a big deal if someone realises their strengths and weaknesses, the very fact of realising your weakness is a brilliant step as time teaches you the other side of leadership also. As person who can be a leader in one field could be a follower in another. Each one has his/her merits.
This made me also realize the importance of a team. Its nothing but the culmination of people with various expertise and on coming together, form a strong and sustainable model. But you cant have 10 presidents and 10 Sheila Dixits. And hence there is a need for one individual to spear head the rest. Thats your leader. Its not because hes the smartest of the lot but because he has an x factor that appeals to the rest and the focus to take his team to the next level. He isnt afraid to get his hands dirty.
If you feel you fulfill the above requisites then what are you waiting for?! If not dont feel bad. I know im not a big leader but that doesnt make me any less. Like I always say if I cant be the change maker always, let me support those who are. Mahatma Gandhi alone didnt give us our freedom it was the people behind him that did.
Think about it.

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