June 14, 2019

When You Drink This Magic Brew

It’s often the way isn’t it?

Those who are supposedly less skilled, less practised, less polished…
become the most engaging, the most watchable, the most mesmerising to observe.

And so it was yesterday.

Co-director Don and I spoke about what – and whom – we had experienced at that seminar, as we travelled the long, weary journey home.

We remembered the speakers who were on that seminar platform, seemingly for the first time.
Their nerves. Their self-consciousness. Their hanging onto the sheets and screens of notes and their prompt cards.

And we wondered why we enjoyed listening to them most of all.

For me, a couple of factors were in play… weaving their misty magic between the delegates and the speakers.

Firstly, I believe that we all admired their courage.
They were up there in that spotlight.
We weren’t.

We’ve all read about the fear of public speaking that melts the organs of even the most intellectually, physically, emotionally robust of human beings.
Well, that fear was there.
And they met it, rose above it, and delivered anyway.

Second was their humility.
Their attention wasn’t fixed on a desire to impress.
They were fixed upon opening their hearts and minds to us…
in the hope that we could see and taste, rather than hear, their message.

Third was their passion. Their love.
We could tell that they loved what they were sharing with us.
We could tell that they loved the members of their teams.
We could tell that they loved the relationships with their clients, whom they worked their socks off to serve.
I mean, they really loved them!
We could tell that they ached so badly for us to discern and experience what they had discerned and experienced.
At times it almost brought them to tears.

Courage. Humility. Love.

It’s an intoxicating mix.
And we quaffed the brew gladly.

More and more, as I engage with those whose role it is to lead…
I realise that the best tools, techniques, skills, practices… they’ll all have limited effect on the success of their leadership.

Courses and seminars, workshops and conferences, programmes and consultants…
They’ll all be lost on the future of their business.

They’ll all be lost, unless one strength is the heartbeat of their thinking, their behaviour.
And that strength is a foundation of relationships reinforced by those three character qualities:

  • Courage

  • Humility

  • Love.

On this foundation sits the success of projects and objectives, goals and milestones, proposals and propositions.

And the sad part is that many leaders are totally, staggeringly, heartbreakingly unaware of what’s missing!

Take those three ingredients from the Brew of Magnificent Leadership.
And we’re merely ‘managing’, not leading at all.

Take those three ingredients away, and everything else about our leadership has only temporary impact.
Our possibilities and potential totter and crumble.
Then they evaporate like mist rising from the hills.