All MBA programs contain at least one course on Leadership. My experience was no different. At the beginning of the course we were asked the question thousands have been asked before, “What does leadership mean to you?” I posted my response to great debate from a couple of students, not all who agreed with me. We were warned that our thoughts may be different at the conclusion of the course.
Leadership can have a variety of meanings dependant on your own experiences and perspectives. This is what I said:
Leadership is like gardening. Sometimes you have to get in there and get dirty. You’ve got to pull out the weeds – akin to problem solving. And you must with certainty always pay attention to what’s growing and give some assistance to the new. Tending to the team, like tending to a garden will eventually reveal all the special attributes of each flourishing item. Whether it is a pot of basil, a bowl of blueberries, or a timely tulip, each has its own unique qualities, each comes with its own special flavour, and each must be encouraged to grow to its fullest potential. Recognizing and drawing out those special attributes, allowing and soliciting their growth is true leadership.
I haven’t changed my thoughts yet, perhaps I will with your answer. What do you think?