If you look at the most successful businessmen in history there is something you will see about every one of them, they were always leaders and not followers. They always did what they wanted to do no matter what other people had to say about it, they also took chances, and the majority of them paid off and helped them become a success. The leadership quality is something everyone must possess to survive in the fast paced and competitive business world, the leaders and the free thinkers are the ones that excel while the followers and copycats fail. It is not hard to be a leader, just forget what you have learned from others that may have taught you how they did things. Just do what comes naturally to you, think for yourself and try to think of things that have not been done but you think you could do well. Forget many of the things you may have learned in college, because how most others are thinking, you need to do your own thing and try to be different and stand out. When you find your creativity and hit a stride you will start excelling and others will start to follow in your footsteps, whether it is unorthodox or not.
Here are a few articles/videos that discuss ways to be a leader and not a follower.
Learn to become a Leader and Not a Follower – Here are some tips on being the leader that you need to be in todays competitive world.
10 Steps to becoming a Leader – here are 10 different steps that will help you on your way to becoming a leader and not a follower like millions of others.
More About Leading and Not Following – Here is another post and video on the subject, there are some excellent points made here that can help inspire you.
Are You a Follower or a Leader? – Another great blog post on leaders and followers and what it takes to be one.
Here is a great video via TED about leadership:
Another part of being a leader and going your own path is experimentation and testing before you try to do anything with them. For example, say you create a brand new social community that you think has the potential to thrive on the web. In order to do this you need to come up with things that have not already been done by so many other social communities that are on the internet. Come up with new ideas, implement them, and test them many times by yourself and even have some close friends or coworkers test them. Making a product that is unique, with lots of working and groundbreaking features can do a lot for you in establishing the fact that you can be a great leader when you put in time, effort, and free thinking.
Hopefully this will motivate some people to make the change towards being a shepherd and not just a sheep. To help you find even more inspiration and motivation to be a leader here are some excellent quotes on leadership to close out this post:
“Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” -Steve Jobs
“Leadership consists not in degrees of technique but in traits of character; it requires moral rather than athletic or intellectual effort, and it imposes on both leader and follower alike the burdens of self-restraint.” Lewis H. Lapham
“A man who wants to lead the orchestra must turn his back on the crowd.” Max Lucado
“Everyone who's ever taken a shower has an idea. It's the person who gets out of the shower, dries off and does something about it who makes a difference.” Nolan Bushnell
“Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody expects of you. Never excuse yourself.” Henry Ward Beecher
“Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them.” John C. Maxwell
“Leadership cannot really be taught. It can only be learned.” Harold S. Geneen
“Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it.” Dwight D. Eisenhower
“Leadership is the capacity to translate vision into reality.” Warren G. Bennis