All too often, we feel like we’re taking a risk simply because we’re going out and spending some money to acquire new resources. And to be fair, this is partially true. Spending money on a new resource does give you the potential of delivering new value.
But that potential value will never be recognized until you step up and spend some of your leadership capital as well.
What is leadership capital?
Leadership capital is courage. The courage to take a stand, and the courage to succeed.
Of course, everyone wants to succeed! But very few people have the courage to actually follow through and do what it takes.
It’s not enough to simply decide you are going to take a risk or do something new. You have to be so committed to the change that you’re willing put yourself in uncomfortable situations in order to make it happen.
To spend your leadership capital wisely, you’ll need to dig deep and find the courage to take on some or all of the following personal challenges:
When you believe in a new path, rejection and challenges are a normal reaction from those who are impacted, especially if they are hearing it for the first time. Initial objections and rejections can very well mean “I don’t understand” as opposed to “I disagree.”
When you believe strongly enough in your ideas, you will be able to move beyond the initial sting of rejection and help your audience gain a level of understanding, acceptance, and maybe even enthusiasm!
People don’t connect to leaders; they connect to the ideas of the leaders.
Business is all about connections. You need to connect to the right team members, partners, and clients. Strong connections happen when you have the right conversations. Those with the greatest quality and quantity of connections are those who share their ideas openly, honestly, and frequently.
These are the individuals and leaders who do great things.
Sharing an idea is great, but your actions will speak even louder. It is not okay to introduce an initiative and then disappear. Or to say one thing and then do something different.
If you want to get others on board, you have to let them see that you are the first one to buy in – and that you are on board. You must lead by example.
We all have ideas about who the world says we should be as individuals, as business professionals, and as organizational leaders. However, those ideas may or may not be relevant.
Stop holding onto ideas about what you’re supposed to be and find the courage to be what you want or need to be in order to secure your future success.
How often do you hear leaders telling people to be innovative, take chances, fail, learn, and move on? All the dang time, right?
But if leaders won’t allow themselves to fail in front of their own teams, it becomes too dangerous for anyone else on the team to make the attempt.
The only way to build a culture of honesty and innovation is by being honest and innovative.
Give Tough Love
Challenge others in your organization to be honest as well. Are they helping move you forward or are they holding you back? When you hold up the mirror of honesty is when you will get the greatest pushback.
Admit it. It’s scary to be that honest. Which is exactly the reason you, as a leader, have to be the first to look in the mirror.
It’s about supply and demand
Leadership capital is extremely valuable for one simple reason: it is unbelievably rare.
However, its rarity is surpassed only by its potency. Spend your leadership capital wisely and you will discover untold riches.
All you need now is to find your courage.
Photo by Rudall30