“If you see problems that threaten to derail
the organization, harm employees, or cheat customers,
you have a responsibility to try to resolve them;
no matter how messy, costly, or difficult it is.
Leaders at the front don’t have the freedom to
neglect what their position allows them to see.”
— John C Maxwell

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In John C. Maxwell’s wonderful and insightful book, The 360 Degree Leader, Developing Your Influence From Anywhere In The Organization, the main theme of the book is that you can choose to lead and be a leader regardless of your position in the organization.

What happens within an organization, if you as a leader within it, see something that is a real problem? Maybe something unethical, illegal, down-right stupid, hurting the organization, something happening to cause issues with personnel, or any number of other things like that? Do you ignore it and think that it isn’t your place? Isn’t your job or position to be able to address that? Or, do you do something about it?

What if by doing something about it, you put your position at risk? Do you still do it, or wait for someone else, or find infinite ways to justify that it really isn’t any of your business?

I love the last sentence in the quote above to shine some light on what to do or not do. He said, “Leaders at the front don’t have the freedom to neglect what their position allows them to see.” No, to neglect that authority would be to choose not to lead, wouldn’t it?

Taking the risk of being a leader wherever you find yourself in an organization can only benefit you and those around you. There is no such thing as one leader in an organization. There is a multitude of leaders that make a valuable company work. This is true right down to the person who answers the phone. In fact, I think that this first contact is more important than any communication with the president of the company. Don’t you agree?

Choose To Lead. Take The Risk. It Will Be Worth It.