Often, leadership is very serious business. There are weighty responsibilities, and vital goals to be accomplished. But if it were all hard grind all the time, why would anyone do it? Leadership can be lots of fun too – and it should be.
So today I want to share with you five fun things about leadership – the fuel that keeps us burning!
It’s fun watching someone you’ve coached flourish
My number one fun thing about leadership is being in the front row to witness someone you’ve been coaching, mentoring, supporting, encouraging and developing step out into the sunshine and truly thrive.
It’s no coincidence that our language for someone who has really ‘come into their own’ is mostly gardening related: flourishing, blooming, thriving, blossoming, growing. It reinforces the leader’s role as a gardener and focuses us on our responsibility to nurture, tend, cultivate and grow the talented people around us. It also highlights the importance of creating the right environment for others to be successful: clearing the weeds and pests, and ensuring good quality soil and access to water.
It’s fun witnessing a game-changing idea come to life
Especially when it isn’t your idea.
I previously wrote that it isn’t a leader’s job to have all the answers, but instead to ask the right questions. Doing so enables those around you to come up with brilliant insights and solutions that will make your business successful.
And it’s great fun to see what they come up with when they don’t have the added pressure of your ideas hanging over them!
But the best part of this is the joy experienced by the author of the great idea. Seeing people be passionate, excited and engaged in their work – in flow – is just good fun!
It’s fun knowing you made a difference
And yes, every now and then, when you’re done tending, and supporting, and letting others answer all the questions, you can make a difference in your own unique way too.
Making an impact and having significance are two of the greatest drivers of engagement – not only at work, but in life. Getting up in the morning to go to a job you love, and where you feel you can accomplish something meaningful (whether you work for someone else or are an entrepreneur/business owner) helps a heck of a lot.
The difference can be small or monumental. But no matter how big it is, enjoy it. Celebrate a little. And keep a record of it. Being grateful for what you have means taking stock from time to time, and not just blindly heading on to the next big challenge.
It’s fun to be pleasantly surprised
Every now and then, something that you don’t expect happens… in a good way.
The team member who had been struggling suddenly figures it out… The client that caused no end of headaches sends you a thank you note… The project that looked certain never to see the light of day suddenly gets the green light… The unexpected promotion…
Whatever it is, savour it.
These delightfully unexpected moments don’t happen every day, and it is up to you to make the most of them.
More importantly – it is up to you to notice them – which not everybody does.
It’s fun to connect
I’m an introvert.
Left to my own devices, I’ll squirrel myself away with a book, or a blog…
But being in a leadership position requires me to connect with other people. It allows me to assume my ‘super-hero power‘ of extroversion to join in, connect, relate and engage.
Funnily enough, once I get going, I really enjoy it. But that first step is the hard one!
Connection is what strengthens our society, and makes work-places enjoyable. It is how we make new friends, and even meet our future spouses. Because every now and then, in that moment of connection, a little bit of magic happens.