Leadership is a journey

Published: Jan 16th, 2021 08:20 pmBy MAHADEVAN MUDALIAR

"A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way."


John C. Maxwell.


Leadership is a journey with others, there is no leadership without followers. The journey is never about the leader but it starts with the leader and the leader is the motivator guide and navigator who is always charting the course and setting the pace and changing directions when needed. On some occasion he leads and is in the front and sometimes he stands behind and watches his team taking the action.

Leading others begins by first leading yourself, unless you are able to lead yourself you cannot lead others. Leadership definitely goes without saying that it is possessing certain capabilities, traits , skills and experiences.

It is said the Purpose precedes the first step. Leaders and followers must understand the “Why” – the purpose of the journey. In the leadership journey, the specific “why” is unique to each project and its desired destination. What is common to all is the importance that everyone understands that specific “Why”.

The more the people embrace the purpose the more likely they will follow. Knowing the  “Why” creates the shift from “ ME” to “WE”.

Vision is the companion of Purpose. If the purpose is the “Why” then vision is “What”. Together  purpose and vision form the basis of leadership. Leadership styles may differ but purpose is always the driving force behind achieving the vision.

If “Why”  is the purpose and “What”  is the vision, is clearly understood then the strategy is the “How”, Strategy is more than just a road to travel, it encompasses how you travel and what is your final destination.

To be a leader one cannot journey alone. Leadership requires followers. To create followers leader has to emotionally connect with the people. The best leader focuses on the people and most of the  times allows the team member to play his role and watches and only steps in for any direction or guidance.

The journey is full of inspiring the team motivating them to reach the destination adding more members when needed and guiding, coaching and course correcting till the destination is reached.

Once the destination is reached it is celebration recognition of the team and preparing for the next. This way the journey continues.

As we see leadership is a journey and there are people involved in this journey the Leadership skill development of the people also becomes important this is because the leader believes in developing new leaders.


Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

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