It can be wrong to delegate. It can be wrong to hide from the details. It is wrong to keep on moving silently like you always did.

Every campaign needs a leader. Be it a political, sporty, adventurous, or organizational one, or a free and open-source project that's run in everyone's spare time. The leader's job is to share vision and provide direction. It's also about making decisions to allow others to follow and move forward, as well as learning from past decisions to ensure that mistakes don't happen again.

But the most important aspect of a leader's role is to be the rough surface for everyone to get involved. Kind of a devil's advocate. Who not only asks many wrong or right questions, but who's also a sounding-board, listening to the arguments and debates you're making, and who provides constructive feedback in return.

Leading people is a constant and permanent job. It does not matter whether you're wrong or not (though, for the sake of trust, it helps to be right more often). The task that ultimately matters is to provide comprehensible feedback and clear direction. Immediately.

The moment humans are unsure about details or extremely confident of something, they just simply turn off their brains. A leader's job is to make you think.

It is hard to think beyond your own horizon. Because of that, leaders always have a better general knowledge than you do. A leader might very well be wrong on a particular detail, and even if you're right on that, the leader's remaining argumentation may invalidate your entire fucking approach and idea. That's the situation in which an entire new world of thinking may open up to you.

The leader's job is to keep on opening worlds, and, to keep you busy. But regardless of how many minds he or she has enlightened, a leader still has to take care of everyone else involved. Applying equality and justice. Courtesy and respect. With the same amount of energy that is being applied to personally prioritized visions.

The amount or quality of delegates a leader has assigned is completely irrelevant for his or her own obligation to "touch ground" with the majority. A psychologically ill effect that we often see in vertically structured communities, such as political parties, is that a protagonist entirely loses ground, only listening upstream, and downstream to delegates. And thus, missing reality.

You are facing reality. That's why it is important to have a leader that takes care of your actual needs. Not just the environment that we happen to live in. Not simply delegating away some major topics. Not ignoring reality.

Do you take the red pill?

Welcome, to your real world.

Everyone who's active in any kind of community has someone to look up to and learn from. You do, everyone does, and so do I. It's extremely inspiring to see others perform. Regardless of whether they are actually "better" than you.

What matters to you is that you have a steadily ongoing stream of awesomeness. That you like. That's broadening your horizon. And, that you may disagree with. You have a leader.

Conversely, you are looking "down" to others. However, there's not a single reason to feel bad or arrogant about it. You're just one puzzle piece in the matrix. You may have more experience than others (or not), or you may just inspire them to do crazy shit. But you need to realize:

You are a leader. You've already taken that pill. And you can't reverse it.

It is time to think about your very own leadership. It is time to think about what you tell me and others. And how often and intensively you do that. And whether you actually listen to me.

You know how to use your knowledge and experience. But don't do it backwards. Don't just only get and learn from some others. Do it forwards!

If people can learn from you, why don't you cherry-pick a couple to specifically train them more? So they can pay it forward in turn?

When you think twice about the problems you're facing, then you'll realize, yes, you are a leader, too. You won't be able to do everything on your own. But you are able to inspire others to change things. They might only need a little feedback to approach it correctly.

This sort of inspiration is called "mentoring". And, I'd like to turn it into a campaign that everyone can and should participate in. Just (carefully) cherry-pick up to 5 people, who are following you, and ask them whether they'd like to learn a lot more.

The rules are simple: Those, who you're mentoring get a "bat phone" line to you, and you're available to provide constructive and in-depth feedback, as well as direction. In return, those who sign up, will work hard to change and improve things. And on top, everyone involved gets an intense network of trust.

Here's mine:

Really #promising and going to change a lot: @two_d @tstoeckler @jacine @plach__ @naught101

Though don't forget: as mentioned earlier, take care of your other obligations. It's not as easy as it sounds. But I'm sure you're going to succeed!

Comments

This is so, so timely - I've been thinking lots about how to mentor Docs Team folks better, and I think that it's really taken about 6 months (since having an "official" role) to get into the groove with it. Some people are coming out of the woodwork now who are really keen to help, and have great skillz for the stuff, and want to learn more.

It makes me so happy just to actually have people who want the mentoring! Very quickly with a little help, they will be super self sufficient and taking much more initiative themselves. :)

I always wanted a bat-phone ;)

Great words from a great mind. Awesome blog post, sun. Everyone comes to that point where they have to go one road, or the other... Leadership is tough, something that I've always found difficult... So happy to have amazing people around like you, @two_d @tstoeckler @jacine @plach__ and @naught101 to help out!

An inspiring article on qualities of a true leader. Anyone can be a good manager but it takes a lot to be a true leader. Every organization has CEOs having great knowledge about managing the organization. But how many companies have leader like Steve Jobs or Lee Iccocha. They are not born leaders. They define themselves, build their leadership qualities, create leader out of themselves. A true leader should be self-motivated and should motivate others to visualize the common goal. They are master piece of inspiration. Above all a true leader is a real human being first.

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