Friday, December 21, 2012

Leaders as Passengers

We are all guilty of it, some more often than others.  Leaders must be able to step into the forefront and be good followers. But, sometimes we disengage so much that we actually become passengers.  Those times we are uninvolved participants going for the ride.  I heard this term from Astronaut Mike Mullane on uTube” 

LiaV Top 5 Leaders as Passenger List:

  1. Reading your Smartphone during meetings and presentations.
  2. Going radio silent on topics to avoid controversy.
  3. Not asking clarification questions to gain understanding.
  4. Thinking about what you are going to say next when the other person is still talking.
  5. Multi-tasking (it is really high speed serial processing).
What would you add to this list?  How do you overcome these challenges?


Allen L said...


The original article is far to long to post, but we need to teach followership as well as leadership.

One simple example of the concept is that during a meeting when someone other than the "boss" is presenting, they temporarily become the leader and the boss is the follower. The boss owes that temporary leader the same attention and loyalty that she or he would expect from any of his employees.

The problem, of course, is that the boss is so used to being listened to he or she forgets that they really don't know everything.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps somewhat counter intuitive, but I would add a #6 as: a good leader is someone who can occasionally allow # 1-5 to happen.
That isn't neccessarily a bad thing, but it just allows us to be human and maybe even learn something new about ourselves or others at those times.

John Bishop said...

Hello Anonymoous,

One of the best parts of hosting LiaV is when perspectives different than my own are expressed and we (I) learn from them. Please do share more on your thought about a #6.

Anonymous said...

I suppose it could be viewed in part as a "slippy slope" in some sense.

Being a leader may require being reserved at times without "going too far" and letting things get out of control. As a metaphor..."it's good to know when to duck as well as when not to duck."

Yes, a leader usually takes charge and makes decisions, but there are some times when more participation and delegation need to be part of the leadership position.

Incidentally, we were contemporaries for a time up at the "big factory" but you had left before I found your internal blog. I found it indirectly when reading Brian K's "Life @ B" blog. Hope you have a good New Year!

Unknown said...

I agree, to be a good leader one must be a good follower too. People often confuse being a follower as not being a good leader, however it is quite the opposite. In the Book, the Courageous Follower by Ira Chaleff we can see that followership is an essential part of becoming a great leader. "But on another level there seems to exist the deepest discomfort with the term follower. It conjures up images of docility, conformity, weakness, and failure to excel. Often, none of this is the least bit true." "If we are not willing to risk whatever relationship we have built with a leader by providing honest feedback, we instead risk losing the whole dream for which we have both been working. We will grow more cynical about the leader, and the leader will grow increasingly unreal about the impact of his actions." These are some quotes from his book. And we can see by reading them that followership and leadership do go hand in hand

Resort Management said...

Leader for sure a people who gain the respect of the crowd and are to be followed by masses.

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