I’ve been writing my Powerquotes Plus newsletter for nine years (and it’s predecessor Powerquotes for 13 years). In every issue there is a quotation, questions to ponder, and action steps.
Because of this, I have written 1000’s of questions over the years, hopefully many of them very good.
But a question I wrote the other day, while a good one, I believe could be misinterpreted. But I’m getting ahead of myself. First here is the quotation:
“One of the characteristics of a winning human being
is that they always view themselves as a do-it-yourself project.”
— Napoleon Hill, author
And the question I’m referring to is:
Does “do-it-yourself” mean the same thing as “do it alone?”
I don’t think it does, the implications of this for us is leaders are many.
To develop effective leadership skills each of us as leaders must recognize we must do it ourselves – we are completely accountable for our personal leadership development, and no one can do it for us.
The corollary is an equally important point. Organizations can provide the best leadership development programs in the world, and they won’t work, unless the participants decide to put them to use.
In these two ways leadership development is definitely a do-it-yourself project.
But is that the same as “do-it-alone”?
I don’t think so.
We can be personally accountable for our learning, but that doesn’t mean we can do it alone. To become a highly effective leader we need help – in the form of training, resources, coaching and mentoring, and a host of other things.
In the end, learning leadership starts with our personal accountability (i.e. do it yourself) but we need others to help us practice the skills and gain the experiences that move us down our path towards Remarkable performance (i.e. not do it alone).