If you want to build a ship don’t herd people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea. Antoine-Marie-Roger de Saint-Exupery
I have been spending a good amount of my time of late pondering this question, “If a leader is called to lead, how do they actually do it?”
I mean everyone is a bit different in the way they lead, yet there are some core characteristics that makes a leader a leader in their given area. (Again I am working with a definition of leader as ‘anyone that chooses to use their gifts and influence for the good of others.’)
The above quote by Antoine-Marie-Roger de Saint-Exupery speaks to a core understanding/attitude for anyone that leads. Leading is about helping people to long for endless immensity and possibility of venture you are calling/inviting them into.
It is not primarily about the list, or making sure that everyone knows their job – although those things are deeply important. The main task of those that invite others to undertake a new venture is their ability to help others imagine the bigger, better day that lies ahead of them.
The leaders job – no matter what wiring they have – is to help people see that picture and to long for the endless immensity of the sea.
A leader must have tasted and known endless immensity of their sea. It is critical for the leader to know that they know that they know that the sea, endless and immense is where they MUST be.
The gathering of supplies, the cutting of the wood and such will happen, but first, someone, the leader has to be willing name their longing for the sea. The leader has to risk inviting others to that same passion and deep desire.
What is your ‘sea’?
What do you need to do to help others long for endless immensity of your ‘sea’?