JS Tip 199: From the Leadership Workshops: Who Leads?

Last week we talked of how leadership affects customer service.

At the end of the discussion, we asked, “Who are the leaders?” and “Who influences a culture?”

We are.

We are the leaders.

Let’s talk of two types of leaders:

De jure leaders. Leaders by position. Leaders by title. Leaders by promotion. (De jurede zhoor’—means “by law.”)

De facto leaders. Men and women at whatever level who lead by example. By caring. By deed. (De facto means “by fact.”)  

Every culture, every organization has both types. Ideally, they work together to reach the organization’s goals. In intelligent organizations, de facto leaders quickly become de jure leaders (but that’s a whole ‘nuther discussion).

The organization’s staffing chart identifies the de jure leaders. How do we identify the de facto leaders?

They know their jobs, and they help other people learn theirs.

They listen to others, and they respect the ideas they hear.

They find ways to improve the organization, and they work to apply those improvements.

They’re men and women of integrity. They can be trusted.    

No matter what position you hold, you can be a leader. You can become what you want to become.

As the revolutionaries in Les Misérables sing, “The time is now. The day is here.”