What is Leadership?

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24 Jun 2019 04:23 - 24 Jun 2019 12:33 #339984 by Rosalyn J
In my study time I am reading Simon Sinek’s Start with Why. The first part of the book focuses on what does not work. Essentially what does not work is assumptions and manipulations. It's only natural to use these two things because they are easy. With assumptions we only need a piece or a notion. With manipulations we only need to see or know what “works”. As Jedi, though, we ought to be prepared to do the hard work, take the narrow road, play the long game, etc.

How do we stop assumptions? I think we need to be both aware and honest with ourselves about the assumptions that we make not only about ourselves, but also about others and our current circumstances. We don’t have to shout our assumptions from the rooftops or post them in a public forum as a show of nobility. Maybe just write them down or recite them to ourselves. Assumptions, I don’t think are bad, but we can’t make them our bread and butter. And I think that we might be able to forgo at least some assumptions if we put on the humility to talk to people about our thoughts, feelings and gaps in knowledge.

Perhaps we have somehow bought the lie that we must know everything to be taken “seriously”. I cannot deny that I have rowed that boat a bit. There was an ancient group who may have bought that lie as well and they put to death a man who was convinced he knew nothing and only trying to show them that they were in the same boat. Sometimes we won’t have all the answers and we will still have to act. It becomes a problem when we act like we “do” have all the answers and aren’t prepared to listen to or dialogue with anything else.

This is a particular problem with leadership because of the way that leadership is idealized. A leader is confident and self assured and thereby inspires confidence and self assurance in others. But what does that look like? What does that act like? Maybe we don’t know and we try to approximate it by projecting through actions and words.


I’ll never forget what John Maxwell said about leadership, “Leadership is influence. Nothing more, nothing less”.

We all have the power to influence the spaces we occupy. In fact, we are doing it right now. We are either building up or tearing down in the spaces and both are influence. Influence is like a gardener. When we take care of the garden things bloom. When we leave the garden alone, it grows without our meddling, sometimes it gets overgrown, sometimes it gets weeds. But when we set fire to the garden, or constantly pull up the blossoms, or forget that the garden needs work, that’s influence too.

Here is an accompaning video:


I’d like to ask, John Maxwell says “Leadership is influence”, but what do you think leadership is?
Share your thoughts below.

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Last edit: 24 Jun 2019 12:33 by Rosalyn J.
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24 Jun 2019 08:23 #339986 by ren
Replied by ren on topic What is Leadership?
With tonality playing such a huge part when influencing people, if leadership is influence there can be no leadership here.

Convictions are more dangerous foes of truth than lies.
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24 Jun 2019 14:59 #339990 by Manu
Replied by Manu on topic What is Leadership?
More than tonality, the prerequisite for influence is rapport.

The extent to which one can build rapport in a community such as this one, is strongly linked to how much people are willing to be authentic (i.e. let their guard down and risk vulnerability). Given that many do actually arrive to TotJO in an emotionally vulnerable state, it can be quite easy for them to establish rapport with members who are also in the habit of putting themselves out there.

Only when there is a perceived inauthenticity does rapport suffer, and influence becomes impossible. I have seen a fair amount of people here who lead, so I disagree with ren's statement.

However, I would say that the constant cry for defining "what is a Jedi" is probably - in part - an expression of a perceived void in defining the shared vision we want to work towards collectively. If everyone is working on their own "why", without sharing in that why with others, then the community becomes incohesive. Leadership is difficult.

Long-term consistency trumps short term intensity
- Bruce Lee
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24 Jun 2019 16:06 - 24 Jun 2019 16:26 #339993 by Victor
Replied by Victor on topic What is Leadership?
I think that there are many types of leaders and many situations where one can become a leader. It seams to me that everyone on that video is a feeler (I'm talking about the MBTI types if you are not aware of what I'm talking about), so they are taking it with that perspective...there are good leaders that ain't peting everyone on their backs and they still are good. A leader can command respect, get the job done, help people be better, and not be that much of a giver. Now, what do I think leadership is? What the people that follow the leader decides leadership is.

Now...a leader does needs to have some specific traits, like strength and bravery, for example. But I don't think that everyone who has influence is a leader.
Last edit: 24 Jun 2019 16:26 by Victor.
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24 Jun 2019 19:28 #339998 by Carlos.Martinez3
In real life as here - leadership IS always difficult. When it is said “leadership influences ...” statements like this can help keeps specifics handy.
Leadership is like everything else - it can be different. If leadership comes from following ... when do some “forget” how to Follow- when does listening and mentoring and guiding ... go? Leadership isn’t easy.

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24 Jun 2019 21:30 #340003 by ren
Replied by ren on topic What is Leadership?
'More than tonality, the prerequisite for influence is rapport.'

Nonsense. Rapport helps but is ultimately unnecessary. The most influential people in the world have nothing in common with the people they influence... And the most common trait in leaders is sociopathy.

Convictions are more dangerous foes of truth than lies.
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24 Jun 2019 23:12 #340009 by Rosalyn J
Replied by Rosalyn J on topic What is Leadership?
When you say "sociopathy" what do you mean?

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25 Jun 2019 01:21 #340012 by Kelrax Lorcken
Replied by Kelrax Lorcken on topic What is Leadership?

Rosalyn J wrote: When you say "sociopathy" what do you mean?


Wild stab in the dark: he's talking about dictators- both perceived and actual.

Odd to conflate the most memorable (negativity comes easy, it's part of learning to avoid bad things) with being the entirety, but, I'm guessing, anyway.

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25 Jun 2019 01:28 #340013 by Rosalyn J
Replied by Rosalyn J on topic What is Leadership?
In a bit of quick research it just seems that sociopathy is an extreme of antisocial. And when we consider social as being rather group minded, it doesn't have the negative, pegorative connotation.

www.etymonline.com/word/social

As it were, leaders have unique qualities that make them stand out. Its often those qualities that draw us to them/them to us

Don't let your wounds get in the way-Bishop Vashti McKenzie
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Youth Minister
Editor in Chief of the TOTJO Times
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Teaching Maitre: Alexandre Orion
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Kyber,Freja Saol-Wasser, Tobias Giesel, ZealotX,and Jhannuzs

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25 Jun 2019 03:41 #340014 by Manu
Replied by Manu on topic What is Leadership?

ren wrote: 'More than tonality, the prerequisite for influence is rapport.'

Nonsense. Rapport helps but is ultimately unnecessary. The most influential people in the world have nothing in common with the people they influence... And the most common trait in leaders is sociopathy.


Well, at the very least a good leader needs to be able to convey to their followers that his/her goal somehow represents their own.

You may have a point about sociopathy. A sociopath would be very effective at fine-tuning their delivery as to elicit followership, without empathy getting in the way.

Long-term consistency trumps short term intensity
- Bruce Lee

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