As noted in “Why do leaders fail?”, “people have a 10th sense for when someone does not really care.” Famed Rabbi Harold Kushner, and author of “When Bad Things Happen to Good People” has said, “Caring about others, running the risk of feeling, and leaving an impact on people, brings happiness.” Leaders indeed should care about others, especially their followers. Caring impacts them. It gives them a sense of purpose. And yes, real “Happiness” not just for the person receiving the care but the person offering care.
In keeping with the theme, “Why do leaders fail?”, so why is passion so important? Famed author Tony Robbins has said, “Live with passion!” He has also said, “Passion is the genesis of genius.” A leader that lacks passion lacks genius. He or she also lacks creativity. They lack drive to get things done. Life becomes listless without life. So how do I get passion? In my belief, you cannot get passion. Unfortunately, some organizations attempt to force passion. Not only does this fail but people become resentful, or worse feel guilty because they feel flat. Nevertheless, if the idea does not warrant passion it cannot be manufactured or pumped up. In essence this means that if an idea or concept is passionless, it is time to find another idea or re-frame the present idea so that it generates genuine passion.
While there are many reasons leaders fail, here are three of the biggest reasons:
- Lack of Passion. Too often leaders simply lack passion. This happens all too often in the corporate environment where someone is promoted into a leadership role. Unfortunately all too often the ability to maneuver politically with the ‘right’ people can lead to a manager being promoted into a leadership role. However, it is this same approval seeking behavior that hampers a person from leading effectively.
- Not Caring. Just like a dog can sense fear, people have a 10th sense for when someone does not really care. Often people greet each other with a customary “How is it going?” Have you ever noticed that only on an exceptionally rare occasion does anyone actually say how things are going? In the same way, people can smell-out a leader who expresses interest in what is happening but yet does not truly care. Well-meaning words fall on deaf ears but actions are heard clearly.
- No Vision. People love to be led. If a leader is simply following the established office protocols and agendas for the most part people will simply discount the leader as just another ‘manager-wannabe-leader’. Leaders must have vision. Leaders must think. Leaders must challenge the status quo. Leaders ask lots of questions. By the way true leaders are quite disconcerting to the avant-garde who are used to running the show the way they see fit without anyone challenging them. So duck.