Leaders Open Doors

July 25th, 2013 | Leadership

Guest Post by Bill Treasurer

Leadership is the most over-analyzed, thoroughly dissected, and utterly confused topic in business. After 20 years as a practitioner of leadership development, it took my five-year old son to simplify it for me.

One sunny afternoon Ian, my son ran upstairs and exclaimed:

“Guess what, Daddy? I got to be the Class Leader today!”

“Really? Class leader? That’s a big deal, little buddy. What did you get to do as the class leader?”

Ian’s next seven words would simplify twenty years of research and alter my understanding of  leadership forever.

“I got to open doors for people!”

Ian’s answer was simple, funny, and in its own way, profound. Leadership, at its core, is about opening doors for those you lead. It’s about identifying, creating, and assigning opportunities that help people and organizations grow and develop. It’s about moving people out of their comfort zone so they continue to strive toward a higher standard of performance.

Think about the leaders who you admire most. Pick people you’ve actually worked with versus someone on the world stage. What doors did they open for you? Did they assign you to a challenging “step up” opportunity that caused you to refine your skills? Did they let you lead a project that helped you discover new strengths? Did they provide you with an opportunity to close a blind spot by giving you candid and courageous feedback?

Here are two great questions worth thinking about:

  1. What opportunity doors have been opened up for you along the way?
  2. What opportunity doors might you be able to open for others?

Remember, effective leadership is all about creating opportunities for others!
Bill Treasurer is the author of Leaders Open Doors, which focuses on the responsibility that leaders have for creating opportunities that cause people to grow. The book is carrying out its own message: 100% of the royalties are being donated to programs that support children with special needs. Learn more at Leaders Open Doors.

Bill is also the author of Courage Goes to Work, an international bestselling book that introduces the concept of courage-building. He is also the author of Courageous Leadership: A Program for Using Courage to Transform the Workplace, an off-the-shelf training toolkit that organizations use to build workplace courage. Bill has led courage-building workshops for, among others, NASA, Accenture, CNN, PNC Bank, SPANX, Hugo Boss, Saks Fifth Avenue, and the US Department of Veterans Affairs. Contact Bill at btreasurer@giantleapconsulting.com, or on Twitter at @btreasurer (#leadsimple).

Question from Bob:  Who has opened doors for you?

MORE RECENT POSTS

Do You Have a Hard Time Saying “No”?

Excerpted from Chapter 24 of “Now That’s a Great Question.” Click HERE to listen to Chapter...

The Essence of Your Job

Excerpted with the permission of the authors from Chapter 18 of Power Questions: I’m at lunch with my...

Great Leaders Ask Great Questions

Guest Post by Richard Blackaby I went to school for 24 years. I should have liked it, but I must confess that...

ASKING GREAT QUESTIONS IS BETTER THAN FINDING SIMPLE ANSWERS

Guest Post by Drew Browne People usually try to understand things in terms of what they already know. This is...

THE ART OF ASKING POWERFUL QUESTIONS

Excerpted from Chapter Two of “Leadership for Sustainability Powered by Questions” by Thomas...

SUSTAINABILITY – AS MINDSET AND ETHICAL CLAIM

Excerpted from Chapter One of “Leadership for Sustainability Powered by Questions” by Thomas...

Ten Power Questions Your Donors Will Love

Guest Post by Gail Perry Here’s a natural, friendly and much more successful approach to major gift...

One thought on “Leaders Open Doors

  1. I agree 100% – great post. the best leaders I have followed have sought to push others forward rather than assert their own interests. This includes my Army Drill Sergeant!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.