Leadership is full of contradictions

Leadership is full of contradictions. Most leaders appear to be very confident, yet they carry within themselves their own doubts about the effectiveness of their leadership. Strong and effective leaders make it look easy, yet they also know that providing leadership to others is the hardest things they have ever done. On the surface, leaders appear to be complete and accomplished professionals, but true leaders know that the key to personal development as a leader is accepting the fact that leadership is a process that will likely never be completed nor accomplished.

I have never know any leader that has not, at one point or another, struggled with these contradictions. It is the contradictions of leadership that keep us sharp, and drive us towards new leadership heights. Have you ever seen a sports star or a sports team that appeared to have reached the pinnacle of their profession? They make it look easy, they appear confident, and they perform as though they have discovered all the secrets and they have put it all together. And then, as if on cue, at the next game or the next tournament, they discover that they didn’t quite have all of the answers that they thought they did. And they start looking for those answers all over again.

This is the contradiction of leadership. We spend a majority of our time looking for the answers to those contradictions, and wondering if we will ever reach our full potential and become the complete type of leader that people will want to follow.

If you are not sure that you have what it takes to be the best leader you can be, but want to keep trying until you get there; if you think you’ve got work to do before you can help others be the best they can be, chances are that you are the type of leader that other people will want to follow.