Courageous Leadership

“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela

Leadership can be brutally hard. It constantly challenges you, increases your stress and often puts you in situations you may not know how to handle.

A good friend of mine said that leadership is really about courage – and I realized, talking to many successful CEOs, that they get comfortable being uncomfortable. They get used to the tough conversations, with taking risks, and with failure.

Courage is about taking risks. It’s about taking the high road when everyone else goes lower. It’s about confronting the brutal facts and doing things others don’t want to do. It’s about doing things you don’t want to do.

And courage is a mindset. It’s the lens through which you take risks, have tough conversation, stretch yourself and receive the punishment of being in a senior role. Through this lens, you can take on those challenges, and feel invigorated and proud of conquering them.

There is no ‘in-between’ with leadership – it either slowly destroys your life, or it forces you to get stronger. – Your Oxygen Mask First

In a difficult conversation I had recently, the person I was speaking with became angry and upset about a decision I made. Although I understood why they were upset and knew there would be short-term consequences, I knew it was the right decision.

Sometimes you have to have the courage to do what you know is right, even when it’s painful.

I’ve worked with leaders who don’t have courage.  As a result, their business is filled with mediocrity – with their people and their customers’ experiences. And, they suffer personally with a business they hate or is eating them alive.

That’s why working with a coach, mentor or advisor is great. Sometimes you can borrow or rent courage from someone who is more comfortable or experienced than you.

It’s scary and challenging to work through big obstacles but, with courage, there’s always a way through.

The Challenge

  • What issue do you, or someone on your team, have right now that you may deal with differently if you had the courage to tackle it directly?
  • Where could you borrow or rent some courage, until you’ve found your own, to get the job done?

If we can help in any way, call us.