Becoming a leader starts with leading without authority.
What is it?
Leadership is much less about what you do and much more about who you are.
- Leadership is about being a better person. Personal flaws greatly hinder progress as a leader.
- To create a high performing team, you must help others grow as leaders. Taking time to scale people allows more time for the leader.
- Leaders must set unarguable goals for the team they lead
When trying to accomplish the above, he points out the following behaviors:
- Setting the pace (decision making, task execution, progress tracking etc). Don’t let issues linger
- Watching for excuses -> probe into why constraints exist. Do not stop at team boundaries.
- Use your leverage. Use your title to solve problems appropriate for your scope.
- Follow through with commitments
- Sharpen your knives (keep your understanding of technology). Use this expertise to ask better questions.
- Picking up the hard parts of growing people
Leadership means being able to think for yourself and act on your convictions
- William Deresiewicz2
Leading a group in a new direction requires:
- having an idea that is separate from the main stream, if were not distinct, you would not have to lead your group from the consensus:
- having conviction in your correctness
- convincing others to follow you and your new idea
In order to accomplish that, first you must be able to think for yourself. Second, you must know yourself and have a firm grounding on what is right and what you believe. William Deresiewicz argues that you can only achieve both through solitude2. Solitude in thought: i.e. singular focus separated from main stream thoughts and opinions. Solitude in friendship, having deep connections with a few people you can trust rather than a diffuse network.