Thoughts, Engagements, and Updates

28 Apr 2014

Respect Yourself Enough To Walk Away


One of the biggest strongholds to generational leadership is the lack of self-will to pass on the leadership baton. Peradventure this may be the consequence of prestige, power and perks that come with leadership. Some leaders are afraid of being bumped down to the spectator’s seat. Apparently such transition is difficult. Indeed it’s hard to stop something that you’ve enjoyed and that has been very rewarding.But there comes a time when you must face the toughest decision as a leader, and pass on the baton.

Howbeit, it is tough to give up and pass the mantle of leadership to the next generation. Usually two things are involved here: either the love of leadership or perhaps the fear of the next generation failing.

One of the newest news stories of the past decade has been the choice of forcefully removing leaders from power. We see this from Mubarak’s to Gaddafi’s regimes. Where people took to the streets, and uprooted what seem to be the world’s strongest powers. The lesson from their fall is to learn to quit before you are thrown out.

I will give several reasons while you may no longer be fit for that leadership position, and should consider finding a replacement. Pass on the baton to someone with the vim to effectively wrestle the challenges of today’s marketplace. There are some facts you need to realize as you consider this option:

You Cannot Lead If Strength Is Leaving You

Couple of years ago I was a wanna-be athlete with the dream of winning an Olympic gold medal, thinking it was done by might alone. The first day for training came. Well, I was overly prepared (drank a lot of water) for that 100 meters track race, but only to realize that I was the last to get to the finish line. That was the end to my career of becoming an Olympic champion, since I was kicked out of the camp for my under-performance, and was actually considered to be giving a Guinness Book of Record award for being the worst athlete ever to run a 100 meters race in history. What happened? Strength left me and I collapsed on the field of play. Notice, it is not as if I didn’t want to finish or got tired but like Daniel in Dan. 10:8, strength left me, my face grew deathly pale, and I was helpless and the only thing I could do for myself to help myself was to collapse. Yet instead of calling for help, considering my condition, I insisted on finishing the race and made a fool out of myself. Some may say, is better I finished last than not finishing at all. Well that theory actually doesn’t work out fine in business. You don’t pride yourself to finish last in the marketplace. It is either you win or lose.

Unfortunately a lot of leaders are like that today. They are too weak to run the race of leadership, yet they want to get to the finish line of their vision. Well, just like I did, they may eventually get to that finish line last and broken, addressing an outdated need. You cannot win with a poorly functioning psyche. When you notice that you are getting weak, please pass on the baton to the next generation. Otherwise you may get to the finish line unfulfilled.

That Vision May Not Be Accomplished By You

Many leaders wrongly assume that their vision for a group ought to be exclusively accomplished by their visionary might alone. Well, that may not be the case. Study shows that most multinational companies that seemingly thought they were at their peak when its founders were still in charge later discovered that was actually their poorest performance level. It is proven that 90% of such companies experienced an unprecedented level of financial explosion and growth right after the founder had handed down the mantle to the next leader. A vision is a group cause and not yours alone to accomplish. Understand that you are only a medium through which God brought about that idea and may not be the only agent of execution.

When The Mind Is Weak, Vision Is Weak

Our mind is the powerhouse without which we cannot power whatever that is in us. When our powerhouse is weak, the light it reflects becomes dim. Similarly, our mind and our vision expounds round the same chemistry. When your mind is weak, your vision is weak, and vice versa. You need a strong mind to accomplish any vision. Why? Anybody who must step into the arena of leadership must be ready to march even when the band is not playing. And it takes a strong-willed mind to survive the harshness of leadership. It is one thing to know what you must do. It is another thing to have the courage to actually do it. A strong mind is one of the essential character traits of people who make a difference in their world. When we fail to display the courage of our convictions, it is an indices that is time up to pass on the baton to someone well placed and mentally positioned for the task.

Don’t forget, it is better to move, than be moved. Respect yourself enough to walk away from a vision that doesn’t need you anymore. There are many people that can effectively drive that vision to its peak aside you. The world would be much better if people practice the self-discipline of “letting-go” the things they are no longer fit for. There should come a time when we just have to change job, hand over to another, or rebrand an idea. Don’t be ousted out of your place, rather quit before people get tired of you. It takes not just courage to lead, but having the right kind of people around you.

Don’t be easily replaced because you are a coward. Don’t be too comfortable doing nothing. Don’t be unwilling to transit out of that comfort zone.

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