Purpose, Direction, and Motivation are the three things that a leader MUST provide to the team in order to have success. Leave any one of them out, and the results of the team will suffer.
This material should be included in all high school curriculum at some point instead of just in the MJROTC courses, because the fundamentals of leadership are simply a requirement to achieving ones goals.
The leader must provide Purpose, so that the team knows what it is supposed to accomplish. They must understand the goal so that they can act in the absence of the leader. They must have a understanding of the objective, of what is expected of them and by what standard they will be judged in order to set for themselves an idea of what accomplishment means.
The leader must provide Direction, because the team needs also to know HOW the objective is to be reached. In some cases the objective is enough and the direction that is given is to use best judgement, rely on past experience etc, but in this case Direction has still been given, and the team members will perform well because they have been given this trust. It is unwise to do this all the time, or the leader will never shape the team the way he or she wants, and will never have demonstrated the kind of thinking required, resulting in the team feeling insecure when they use their own judgement. So Direction then is first used as a training aid, and ensures that the team delivers the result in the manner expected, and then later as a means of ensuring that the team members will call upon experience and grow in their own leadership skills because they have been given the direction to do so, once that place in the development of the team has been reached.
The leader must lastly provide Motivation to the team. The team can understand what is expected and how the expectation is to be reached, but not having an internal drive to accomplish the task, they will perform only at low levels, and the team morale can suffer. The leader MUST take it upon him or herself to provide motivation in whatever manner the team needs most, and which will result in the highest performance. If the leader thinks that the team should self motivate, or that having a job is enough – it is just LAZY thinking and the results will nearly always demonstrate this.
So while these things to not in and of themselves make a great leader, in order to effectively lead, these basic fundamentals must be provide to the team, and it is the leader… who must provide them.
Purpose, Direction, and Motivation
Many of you have a set of tools that you want to put into action. Many of you have goals and want to make a difference in your world but for some reason, you are waiting. Or, you have taken the first steps but you are not all the way in yet, not 100%
What is it that you are waiting for?
Is it for another to inspire you?
Is it fear?
Fear of failure, or success, or what people will think of you?
What would it feel like for you to be 100% in your own power?
What could be accomplished if you just stood up and acted?
What would be gained if you just ignored that voice that keeps you silent?
Do not wait for those around you to be ready, they are ready now.
Do not wait to feel better or stronger, you only feel that way AFTER THE ACTION
Do not wait for someone to give you permission to be powerful, you already have it
Do not wait for someone to give you authority, the leader is often not the person with the most authority
Do not wait – Act!
Make a difference
When you really think about it – Fairness is inherently a victim thought. That is to say, that there can be no lack of fairness, without a victim.
Sometimes it is the victim who points out the lack of fairness, in the form of a complaint. “This is not fair”, “That is not fair” without completing the sentence in a way that would reveal the underlying victim thought. A more complete way to say this would be “This is not fair-TO ME” or “That is not fair-TO ME”, and so by finishing the thought, we reveal the victim.
Sometimes it is another who points out the lack of fairness by indicating in some way that this or that is not fair TO ANOTHER, and this is also a dramatic thought because it implies that the person who it is not fair to, is in fact being victimized in some way. Say for example that the father of two children walks in and proclaims that his Son can have Ice Cream, while his daughter cannot – with no reason whatsoever. This is a great example because it lets us look at the situation and ask;
If you follow this chain, you will probably conclude that this is all very subjective, and depends entirely on our perspective.
What if the daughter hates ice cream (or liver) and when the announcement is made she feels joy?
Another name for the Drama Triangle is the Three faces of Victim… So whomever identifies the lack of fairness, might just be experiencing drama.
One person I spoke with, said that he never really experienced a feeling of “that’s not fair”, but instead always saw it as a learning opportunity. He would see the result that he wanted, and would go about making sure that the next time the same circumstances came up, that he would be in the position that he wanted to be in . Seen this way, does fairness exist?
Other than as a construct in our minds, does fairness truly exist?
There may be many arguments for this question, and they may hold weight that has not been identified. I acknowledge that completely without entering into a discussion on it – but for the purpose of this posting, I believe that the following questions are the best place for us to start, at least for ourselves;
Once we place ourselves in the position of power, and acknowledge that we have the power to create change in our own lives, the victim is removed, and the drama fades away.
In the end its our call, each and every one of us, each and every time.
Fairness is one of the most interesting thoughts, and it seems to be one of the primary causes of drama I think. I have in other writings or videos talked about how we create lower standards by seeking fairness, and how the chase to make things fair, sometimes leads us astray.
This time I want to just talk about fairness. Most of the time I think, fairness pops up as a lack of fairness rather than a sense of fairness, and when this happens, the most common reaction to the lack is to fall into victim thinking about how its “not fair” and how it should not be that someone else, has what we so obviously should also have, or have instead of…
This is a particularly dangerous road to go down because once a person decides that they are helpless to obtain what it is that they want, they will instead follow one of two or more darker paths. Obviously the healthy and responsible path to follow once a person has determined that one wants a thing, is to just go about getting it. This however seems to be the rarest of paths that we take. Instead, we follow a darker path, and I list two, because they are at the forefront of my mind, but I say two or more, because there almost certainly other paths that have not thought of and do not include here, but we should not overlook them if they become apparent.
The first of the darker paths is to seek fairness by reducing what we bring to the table. Say for example that we are talking about an employee feeling taken advantage of, because the employee is not paid what he or she believes him or herself to be worth.
This is a very common thought pattern and to list this example I will use information discussed in my video “What needs to be done” For the sake of the example, lets assume that the employee believes that they are worth 10 dollars per hour, but have taken a job for 1 dollar an hour. It may be that they took the job believing this, but just as common is that they took the job feeling fine about it, and then later decided that they were worth more, and slowly they reached the conclusion that they were underpaid by a great deal.
In both cases, the fairness factor kicks in, and the employee, seeking fairness, will intentionally reduce their own effectiveness, in an attempt to create a world where fairness is served. So now, the employee who is being paid 1 dollar an hour begins to perform at a level that is below the expectations of the employer and it is here that the real drama begins.
The employer, noticing that the employee is performing at a lower than expected level, will feel taken advantage of because the implicit contract between parties is that the employee will receive 1 dollar per hour, in return for performing at the expected level and they are not. To correct this, the employer may counsel the employee, reduce his or her wages, or terminate the contract and begin anew. Proving to both parties forever, that each was taken advantage of by the other and fairness was not maintained.
If you look carefully, you will see the lies that each party told themselves. The employee, should seek employment for the amount they feel they are worth, and then perform at the expected level, and the employer, might be better served by seeking to understand the motivations of the employee, and either reassigning them to an area of more value, or creating other forms of motivation that will compensate for the perceived disparity in fairness. In this example however we began with the employee, and so the focus will remain there.
If you are an employee who believes that they are not paid enough for the performance given. Then you should seek employment at those wages or at a package that satisfies the fairness factor – you should never reduce your own effectiveness to create fairness, because following that path creates a world where you become less, and less effective as you go, until you are eventually trapped by your own actions, unable to accomplish much of anything, for anyone, including yourself.
The second of the darker paths, is where we as people will seek to remove the motivating factor from the other person. In this path, we see someone who has what we want, decide that it is not fair for them to have it, and so we go about trying to take it from them, or at the very least make sure that they do not have it.
This is particularly insidious because not only are we still in victim because we believe that we cannot have what we want, but we actively try to undermine, or rob the other of what they legitimately created for themselves (the proof that it is legitimately theirs by the way, is that they have it)
As an example let say that two good friends are working for the same company, and they started at the same time, at the same level of pay etc. Equal in every way, and over time one of the two, is promoted to higher and higher position.
The fairness factor is activated, and the second friend, choosing a dark path, decides that this is not fair, and so goes about destroying the friendship, and undermining the first friend at every turn in an attempt to return him or her to equal status and thereby create fairness.
Can you see how Victim Thinking now costs this friend so much? He or she loses the friendship, loses the promotions that may be possible (because leaders rarely see those that destroy as valuable), and may actually succeed in costing another (probably temporarily), something that they created for themselves by following the right path.
We could go further into this potential for drama if the first friend, having lost the position assumes a position of victim – but that is better covered in another post.
For now, let’s just see these two dark paths, as the wrong choice. We need to know that we can have what we want at any time, just by deciding we want it, and going after it. By keeping an open mind about HOW what we want will come to us, and by diligently chasing after whatever it is, we are sure to succeed.
Fair does not exist – Fair is a construct of the Ego, and it creates victim thinking.
If you want something, go out and get it – it is after all, your responsibility.
The curious thing about being in a victim state, is that you can see it so clearly in others, but for some reason its the hardest thing in the world to spot in ourselves. Once we start feeling sorry for ourselves and telling stories about how we have been victimized by someone or some-thing, the rest of our tools tend to warp themselves to the vision and in this way, we will see plenty of evidence to prove that we are in fact being victimized, instead of being responsible in any way. We will use logic, facts, story, feelings, and results to prove unquestionably that we were victimized.
The really cool thing to understand here, is that you actually combine two separate destructive patterns because you are (being a victim) , and you are also (being right). Naturally its not cool to be there, but its cool to understand because that can show us how to recognize this in ourselves, and how to get out of it and move into a more productive mindset.
So if you notice that the story you are telling (either to yourself or to another) places you in the role of victim, then you are in a victim state, plain and simple. If you have an anylitical mind, you will very likely be thinking “well sure but what if…(insert example)”. The thing is, no matter what your example here is, there is a difference between the event, and they way you think about it. You can choose to think that you are powerless in the world, and that things happen TO you, or you can choose to be the active player, and be responsible for everything that happens. You see no matter what, to think any other way, does not serve your best interests.
In the same way, you can nearly always identify when you are “being right”, because you can see proof everywhere that you are. If you find yourself thinking or saying “see – that’s proof”, you are being right. Remember that once upon a time, nearly the whole world believed that the earth was flat, that the earth was the center of the universe, and any of a host of other ideas that in time were proven to be false. Yet everywhere we as a people looked, there was proof and since there was proof, there was no need to question it.
When looked at in this way, it may be concluded that questioning what is obvious is both feasible and sound practice. In the case of being right, its frequently more fruitful to look for how you may not be, how there can be more than one truth, and how your insistence that you are correct, may be costing you everything…
What else can we do?
Be WRONG – not all the time, but at least allow for the possibility that you may not be correct, that they may be another perspective to see, that there may be a path outside of what you have seen thus far. Open your mind, and you will see many doors that were previously closed to you, and possibly locked.
Be Responsible for EVERYTHING – this way you are the only one who can take action, you are responsible for your failures, and also your Successes! You get to be the active player in everything. This type of thinking can only serve your highest and best interests.