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The Leader Within

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Embracing the Call

At SurePeople, we believe that everyone is a leader. Whether assigned, assumed, or not yet realized—at one point or another, we all will step up to lead the way on behalf of others. Leadership is not confined to titles or positions. Rather, it’s a universal imperative. It resides within each of us, waiting for that compelling moment when we realize our unique skills, abilities, and perspectives are what’s missing from the forefront of the equation.

Leadership is often associated with CEOs, managers, or political figures. However, true leadership transcends titles. It manifests in moments of crisis when someone offers guidance, wisdom, or experience in an empathetic and selfless moment of support for others.

Consider the words of Drew Dudley in his TED Talk, “Everyday Leadership”. He shares a powerful story about how small acts of kindness and guidance can leave a lasting impact. Dudley’s concept of “lollipop moments” illustrates that leadership is about the influence we have on others through seemingly insignificant actions. In this way, we can start to think about leadership differently and understand that it comes from various places.

The Assigned Leader: Embracing Formal Roles
Assigned leaders are those who have been officially given leadership roles. These individuals have the responsibility to guide, inspire, and drive their teams toward success. However, effective assigned leaders often understand that their position is not just about authority––but service. Simon Sinek, in his TED Talk “Why Good Leaders Make You Feel Safe,” explains that great leaders create an environment of trust and cooperation. They prioritize the well-being of their team, fostering a sense of safety and belonging.

The Assumed Leader: Rising to the Occasion
Assumed leaders emerge in situations where leadership is needed, regardless of their official status. These are individuals who take charge during crises, offering solutions, and inspiring others through their actions. In her podcast “Dare to Lead,” Brené Brown discusses the importance of vulnerability and courage in leadership. She emphasizes that assumed leaders are often those who are willing to step into uncertainty and lead with empathy and authenticity.

The Not Yet Realized Leader: Discovering Hidden Potential
There are also those who have not yet realized their potential to lead. These individuals may lack confidence or opportunity, but their leadership capacity is no less significant. Encouraging this latent potential requires nurturing environments that promote growth and self-discovery. In the TED Talk “Why Do We Celebrate Incompetent Leaders,” Martin Guttman advises that we ignore action fallacy and celebrate the unsung heroes behind the scenes who create process, procedure, and structure.

While the journey to leadership is unique for each of us, the underlying principle remains the same: we all possess the ability to lead. It’s not about waiting for the right moment or the perfect opportunity; it’s about recognizing a need and stepping up of our own accord—even when daunting. As leaders, our impact is measured not by titles or roles, but by the positive change we inspire in others.

As we navigate through life, we each encounter moments that call for leadership. Whether we’re assigned, assume, or have yet to realize the leader within, the impact we have on others defines our leadership legacy. By embracing the universal leader within, we all can contribute to a world where leadership is synonymous with compassion, courage, and positive change.

“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.”
– Nelson Mandela

Do you have an idea you want to share with an empowered community of self-aware professionals? If you’d like to contribute an idea or article to ‘In The Flow of Work’ on the Evolve blog, just send us a message or submit a post to our Head of Content, Adam Schneider

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