I enjoy the poem, The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost. The famous verse from that poem, "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I - I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference," always speaks to my heart.
That verse seems to make a simple, yet prophetic difference, between the actions of leaders and the actions of followers.
Leaders take the road less traveled, even if it isn't popular or trendy. Followers are willing to grab at the first shiny thing they see and aren't looking to distinguish themselves from the crowd.
Here are five common differences between followers and leaders from a LinkedIn article (Harold H. 9/9/2020)
1. Courage and Commitment - A leader depends on his/her courage. A follower struggles to find their spine and is often wishy-washy.
2. Passion - Passion drives leaders farther than their own expectations. Followers are rarely passionate about anything that would distinguish them from the heard.
3. Respect and Honor - Leaders respect truth and serve others with distinction. Followers have no desire to seek the truth unless it benefits their interests.
4. Awareness and Empathy - Leaders are self-aware and know their strengths and weaknesses. Followers track with the group and pursue whatever attracts their attention.
5. Humility and Acceptance - Leaders are humble enough to ask for help and advice. Followers will "fake it until they make it" so as not to appear weak and vulnerable.
It's been said that true leaders don't create followers, they create more leaders. They create those leaders by how they conduct themselves, by being honest and humble, by leading by example, and by admitting their mistakes when they are wrong.
Please check out the video below about how former Best Western chairman, Roger Mathis, compared leadership to the actions taken by Alice in the story, Alice In Wonderland.
Also, leave me a comment about what other differences you see between leaders and followers.
Author & Motivational Speaker
Terry is a sought after speaker who believes in the power of a story to motivate, inspire, and help others lead their uncommon and extraordinary lives. By combining his eleven-year cancer journey with his diverse business, athletic coaching, and hostage negotiating expertise, he delivers compelling yet relatable presentations for conferences, on-line events, panels, meetings, and seminars.