Leadership is one of those topics that is discussed from time to time in the workplace, but those conversations are typically rare, and rarely conclusive.  Of course, there are exceptions, such as when the conversation goes over the yellow line into oncoming traffic.  By this I mean that someone is elaborating on someone else’s perceived leadership ineptitudes.

Leadership is described by some as ambiguous, and for some it may seem elusive, but the reality is that true leadership is a progression.  Leadership is a transformation, it is a life long journey that keeps on getting better and better as long as we keep contributing and learning. 

Learning is THE only constant in the progression we know as leadership. 

I urge everyone to engage in leadership development, not just on one occasion but on an ongoing basis.  Gain an advantage through additional skills, and develop a proficiency in leading people that so many wish they had, but unfortunately don’t to do anything about. 

Here it is, you don’t have to be the president or vice president of the company to be a leader.  You don’t have to have a title that may or may not identify you as a leader.  The truth is that the title on a business card, doesn’t make a leader.  A true leader is made of much more than a fancy title.  If you are waiting for a title to become a leader or to exercise your leadership abilities, don’t wait.  Authentic leaders are those that get the promotions, that are driven to succeed and that take the steps necessary to attain their objectives.  An authentic leader will do, within the realm of reason, whatever it takes to attain their objectives.

A title doesn’t make the leader.

Start educating yourself on leadership, even if you believe that you already possess the skills necessary to be the leader that you want to be, engage in some form of leadership development.  Be aware that you can and should lead from the middle, this quite simply means that you can start from right where you are now.  When it comes to being a leader, your title is irrelevant and shouldn’t be a concern. 

You can lead from the middle.

Leading from the middle means, that you become the very best at what you do now.  You become the example that everyone around you wants to emulate, you will in turn reap the rewards deserving of a true leader.  Leading from the middle doesn’t mean you automatically get paid more, or assume supervisory responsibilities that aren’t a part of your position.  It is however common that those that practice leading from the middle, move into management positions more rapidly than those that are content to watch others do what it takes to make a difference. 

Leaders aren’t born, successful leaders become what they are as a result of education, being proactive, committed and going above and beyond what is expected of them.