“Do Work” Series: Quality 3 – Leading Others

The third quality that those who “Do Work” possess is, they Lead others. Why do these people lead others? Simple. Because they are confident. They are confident in themselves. Confident that they can succeed. But more importantly, they know what the mutual benefits are when leading.

Once you start trusting your talents and abilities and you start believing in yourself, it’s now time to go out and lead others. It’s time to rely on the instincts you built and teach others how do trust and believe in themselves. The question now is, why? Why is important to go out and lead others? I could write a whole blog on why it’s important to lead others, but for the purpose of this post you need to lead others for two reasons.

The first reason you need to lead others is, so you can help make those around you better. Now that you have gained the confidence you need to succeed it’s important to help those around you gain that same confidence. In many instances those around you are struggling with the same fears or insecurities that you once struggled with. Bringing them comfort by leading them will help them to overcome those same fears and insecurities and more times than not, they overcome them faster because they have someone there guiding them.

“When you lead others you help them unlocked untapped potential hiding within themselves.”

I remember in 2006 while at spring training I struggled throwing my curveball for a called strike (a strike that ended up in the lower half of the middle of the zone). I had the fear that if the ball ended up there it would get crushed so up to that point I never figured out the release point for that pitch. Then one day a pitcher (we will call him Jimmie), who had Triple A time and was a former 1st rd pick out of U of Texas, took me aside and worked with me on the pitched and explained to me how effective the pitch is. Jimmie had the same fear as I did his freshman year in college so he knew exactly what to do to help me physically and mentally. After a two weeks of putting in a ton of work I got comfortable with the pitch and started having success with it. He said it took him a month to figure it out.

Having someone there to lead you through challenges helps to take away insecurities that are formed when doing things alone that you are unsure about. Knowing that someone cares enough to help you overcome challenges give you a sense of self-worth and motivates you to push your boundaries and not be scared to fail. Especially when that same person overcame the same challenges you’re faced with.

The second reason you need to lead others is, to polish your own skills. Just as the saying goes, “iron sharpens iron”, so do we, “man sharpens man”. When we are out leading others by teaching and showing them the skills we have developed we are sharpening our own skills. What’s the point to “Do Work” to gain new skills and talent if we are just going to keep them in the bag for only when we need them? There is none! Because when you get to the point where you do need them they will be rusty.

Going back to the example from above. At the time when Jimmie decided to teach me how to develop the curveball I was struggling with, he himself was searching to find his release point for the pitch. After those two weeks of working with me, he was able to regain the confidence with his curveball that he once had and left spring training balling out. When you take the time to lead others and teach them skills that will enhance their abilities you are lessening the chances of your own skills diminishing. But more importantly, you are building up your own confidence in that skill.

I remember to this day Jimmie telling me, “Andy, I used to be able to throw this pitch and get a called strike with it when I wanted . But you know why I couldn’t coming into spring training? Because I stopped working hard at mastering the pitch. But now that I started working with you, it feels like I never forgot how to throw it. Take it from me, never stop working hard on developing and maintaining your pitches”

Habits that we create, or new skills we have developed, are only as good the last time we used them. Leading others once your skills are developed does just as much good for you as it does them. Don’t let your skills get rusty because you want to keep them to yourself. Seek to lead others and help them gain the confidence they need to succeed. You never know what it will do for you.

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