The Cost of Leadership – Have you paid it?

People love positions of leadership because they usually come with perks and some level of prestige. However, perks and prestige does not make a leader. To become a leader – an effective leader, you have to bear in mind that the true cost of leadership is self-interest. Without this awareness and the willingness to sacrifice the self for the good of those being led, leaders abuse their authority and use their power and influence for their own enrichment. The worst thing is that they sacrifice their people in the process.
“Before you're a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others."
~ Jack Welch
The tenet of leadership is that those being led should be better off because of the leader. Often we find that not to be the case. So, one question all leaders should ask themselves is: Will my followers or my team be better off because of my leadership?

Team members and followers usually sacrifice for their leaders when they know the leaders would do the same for them. Once that sense of security erodes and the team cannot trust their leaders put the good of the many before their own, commitment level starts to decrease. My friend and mentor John Maxwell puts it another way. He says, "People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision."

So, what kind of leader are you? Can your people trust that you'll do the right thing when the yogurt hit the fan?
Are you in it for your own enrichment?
I came across a video from 99U where Simon Sinek shares great insights on the cost of leadership. He also shared real life examples to help make the point that people trust leaders to lead but at a cost: Self-Interest. "The cost of leadership is self-interest".
There are great insights and gems in this talk for any seasoned and budding leaders. So, go ahead and hit play for a passionate, lid lifting video sharing insights into leadership and how we can make it work for us.


About The Author

Michael Charles - Certified Coach, Teacher, Speaker with the John Maxwell Team

A founding partner with the John Maxwell Team, I help leaders, entrepreneurs and business professionals develop their leadership and communications skills to build strong, cohesive teams and break through barriers holding them and their teams back without burning themselves out.