As a young Leader, I attended a Conference called, “Leading and Preaching to Change Lives” with John Maxwell and Bill Hybels. In a particular session with Bill Hybels (1997), on “Leadership Gift Mix and Style,” I was transformed. That conference, was over 33 years ago, and much has happened since then.
As a child, my dad was the Chief Engineer of the project in charge of putting a man on the moon. This exposed me to leadership every day of my life. I would include myself in with the Leadership Team that were all friends and who often hung-out together. Many of the Leadership principles I learned in those days, I also put to use in my years as a Contractor, Developer, Manager, and Pastor. Each role required different elements of leadership from me. When I transitioned into mentoring young leaders, I found that their core life would firstly improve dramatically, as well as finding success of their professional lives. Many would become very abundant (or even wealthy). This was in an era preceding the “Personal Coach” industry.
First, let me lay-out a couple core values of Leadership. Yes, some people are born Leaders, but Leadership is documented as a learned skill. That means there is hope for all of us who were born with their leadership bucket being a little on the lite side. Secondly, a Leader never fully arrives. It is a journey of a Lifetime. I’ve studied Leadership most of my 62 years. However, there is a lot of confusion about what leadership is.
Some people feel you must just learn Leadership Principles. There is no question that is very important, but if you don’t understand your Leadership Type, then Some Leadership Principles can become irrelevant. It is sort of like a mechanic who works on a Ford car with Dodge parts. No matter how hard you try, the parts just don’t fit. Even if they have the similar purpose, they will not work. However, there are multiple fuels, like gas, diesel, Biofuels, electric, etc. The fuel is the Type of Leadership, while the vehicle is the Principles of Leadership.
Here’s the deal, a major element that causes one Leader to be different from another Leader, is the Type of Leader they operate in most often. Let me give you an incomplete list of the Types of Leaders that I have found there to be:
When I first heard about this concept from Bill Hybel, a light went off in my head that connected many things that had been in the dark for me. I was under a leader at that time, and I was his second in command. I was constantly frustrated by him, and though I did not know it at the time, I was being frustrated by his Type of Leadership. I liked him a great deal, but I did not understand much about personalities and their interactions, nor the difference in Leader Types. I thought a leader was a leader, right? I could not have been further from the truth. That’s like saying all cars are the same. Armed with a minimal Understanding on the Types of Leaders, I began to understand that at the core of our frustrations, was our Leadership Types.
Today there are thousands of books on Leadership, espousing methods, practices, systems. All that is good and has a place, but if you fail to first recognize what Type of Leader you are inside, then you will be drifting to one methodology to another, from one practice to another, to one system to another.
Obviously, we do not have the space here to cover every Type of Leadership enumerated above. That will be for future blogs. However, you can take the Free Leadership Type Quiz. It takes just a few minutes, but can help focus you on who you are, and how your Leadership Type show up. It is also useful for other Subordinate Leaders or a future Leader to take. For each question, you are to answer with 0 to 5. With “0” being the least applicable to you, and “5” being most applicable to you.
Though I had been frustrated by his Type of Leadership, I now understood why. My Leader was functioning as a Visionary or Entrepreneurial Type of Leader. I on the other-hand was functioning as a Strategic or Manager Type of Leader. We were having major type conflict, though neither of us understood that to be so. He was a Big Picture guy who loved starting New Projects. I was one who could see where all the roads led, along with their hazards. I was good at finishing and implementing. This insight made dramatic differences in how we functioned, in the roles of how we functioned and the result was explosive Growth. How many can use explosive Growth?
Each of us has different Skill-sets and Talents, and that Mixes in different ways, depending on our Personalities. Finally, our Leadership Type play a role based on the Foundations of Skill-sets, Talents and Mixes. This is sort of like the soil where you place a building determines what kind of foundation that building will need to have. Each of us are unique and therefore will not be like any other. You can see this all over. Even two twin’s personalities are different from one another.
In life and in business, each of us is important in how we are made. We do not need to be the same as another. We can be perfect with our own unique strengths as another can be with their unique strengths. In the book, A Certain Trumpet by Gary Wills (on leadership types), Wills suggests certain leaders have had an enormous impact on society because of their leadership type and the Need of Society. This is the same principle to be harness for your Organization and the Leadership Type which you are.
Business owners are leaders whether they have a team working under them or not. Recognizing the type of leader you are and playing into your strengths can make a huge difference in the success of your business.
Look for future Blogs on Leadership to Gain more insight on how to be the Leader you were made to Be. Take the Free Leadership Type Quiz and begin your journey to de-clutter. It takes just a few minutes. Also look for future Blogs here on Leadership to gain deeper insights you can implement to transform your Leadership.
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