Leadership counts, not titles
You Don’t Need A Title To Be A Leader
Author: Mark Sanborn 112 pages
$21 (paperback), S$29 (hardcover)
Available at Girls’ Brigade Bookshop and
Orders can be made with Times Bookshop, Kinokuniya and Popular
By Tan Peck Yin
MENTION THE WORD “LEADER”, and many of us think of a person with a position and title in an organisation. But Mark Sanborn maintains that you do not need a title to be a leader in life, and having a title does not automatically make you a leader. He has found that everyone has the opportunity to lead every day; and it does not matter what position the person holds, or how long the person has been on a job.
He asked his readers the following questions:
Do you shape your life and career?
Do you affect the quality of others’ experience?
Do you inspire or influence others?
Do you work to achieve specific goals by working with or coordinating the efforts of others?
If they answered “yes” to any of these questions, then they are leaders.
He said that leadership is influence, and he quotes leadership guru John Maxwell as saying that it is positive influence.
Anyone at any level can learn to be a leader and help shape or influence the world around him.
Sanborn begins the book by telling stories of people who had no title and no proper qualifications, but yet were able to influence in their spheres of contact.
As I read these stories, I was reminded of our church’s former tea lady, the late Aunty Margaret, who went home to be with the Lord in August 2010. Her position in the hierarchy of our church would have been the lowest. No one realised how much influence she had on young and old, until we saw the number of people who attended her wake, and heard the stories they told of how she had touched their lives. The young people who could not attend her wake even sent their parents to represent them. What a legacy she left behind! I am sure many of us would like to be remembered that way.
Sanborn discusses six principles of leadership: the power of self-mastery, the power of focus, the power with people, the power of persuasive communication, the power of execution, and the power of giving. He then goes on to discuss how to leave a leadership legacy, and what it takes to master the art of leadership.
Tan Peck Yin is one of two Associate Lay Leaders of Trinity Annual Conference and worships at Christ Methodist Church, where she also serves as an Associate Lay Leader, a Care Group Leader and a musician.