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Leadership is choice not position

Drawing on the words of business writer Steven Covey, LSCA Vice President Indy Agnihotri argues leadership is about choosing to create a positive impact.

Indy Agnihotri

January 2019

When deciding on our career choices, most of us look to move into ‘leadership positions’. We seek out roles that will mean we are leaders, typically in charge of people, departments, even whole companies.

But do you know at its core leadership is not actually about roles or job titles? And do you know anyone can in fact do ‘leadership’ and ‘be’ a leader? At any time?

Leadership is a choice.

Roles do not make you a leader. Your choices in any given moment are what are more important.

As the famous business author, Steven R Covey, says: “Human beings have the intrinsic power and freedom to make choices. Next to life itself, the power to make choices is our most precious gift.”

Covey then goes on to say: “…what makes you a leader is the choice you make internally to stand up for something, to resolve to change something, to right a wrong, to voice an unspoken truth. Leaders exist when they make such a choice."

Leadership, therefore is everybody’s business in ANY business using this fundamental human power of choice. And you don’t have to wait before you have that formal job title.

It is an everyday act of inspiring and empowering others and improving each other’s lives.

Linked to the above principle, leadership is about choosing to create as many impactful moments, inspiring and empowering others, where any interaction you have with someone creates a positive impact in their lives.

This TED talk on the subject sums it up perfectly: Everyday leadership 

Take a choice right now.

Regardless of what position you have in any organisation, you can thus ‘do leadership’ in any moment. Guaranteed, if you made a choice right now to start thinking of leadership in this way, it will increase your odds significantly in your move to ‘leadership positions’ in your career.

Indy Agnihotri is LSCA Vice President and business coach consultant, strategic finance director and trainer. Contact Indy.

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