I never started out to become a leader. The person that steps toward an issue and people follow. I didn’t even know that leadership was important when I was in my 30s. Hindsight is such a great teacher, it presents processes that become apparent when you look back, but when you are in the middle of it you can’t see what is happening.
I got involved in a great many community groups, issues, committees and teams. I did it because I cared and wanted to create some social change. Along the way I have built a reputation – again, I did not start out to build a reputation, it just started getting built as I started becoming an active participant… and people joined me – as I joined others.
I was asked for support and help and I said yes – “How can I help you…” and I meant it. I continued joining and helping. What I was doing, in hindsight, was building a community that relied on me and that I relied on. A group of people that were like-minded and wanting to walk a meaningful walk. I joined them and they joined me.
I was asked to present at different groups and I always said yes. I spoke of the things that I knew and openly shared my tips and tricks, and advice to help others in a different place. Names got shared, cards got passed out, and cards got taken by me – I follow up with the people that I feel I connected with and I made plans – lunch or drinks or just helping them with causes they were interested in. Relationships were build – the work of building a reputation – show up and do what you say you are going to do.
I did it, I do it and I will continue to show up and get involved. Meeting fabulous people along the way, mentoring now is what I love to do – helping and growing the people around me. It is just the best way to meet people and get to know them and the issues that are happening in our community.
And all along the way I was building my business – a wonderful side benefit of being involved.
I didn’t set out to be a leader, but now I find that others are following – so I continue on my path and hope that more will follow that I can help and follow others that can help me.
You can lead me or you can follow me at firstname.lastname@example.org