There are some professions that tend to be underappreciated until something goes wrong. Take the I.T. department at a large company, where many people will think one of two things:
- “Things are running smoothly, so why do we need I.T.?”
- “Things are a mess, what is I.T. doing wrong?”
You could say the same about production staff at a concert. There are dozens of people working to make sure all goes smoothly, and if they do their job correctly you don’t even think about them. Leadership can be the same way.
In his book “Create Space“, Derek Draper pulls in a famous quote from Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu:
A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: “we did it ourselves”
You see this at all levels of leadership. If you have a great boss at your job, you should feel empowered to be the person to make things happen (even if they quietly help).
On the flip side, you have people like Donald Trump that insist on taking full credit at every opportunity. I’m sure you’ve had bosses like that in the past.
Allowing people to “do it themselves” can be a tough at times, but works out beautifully for everyone in the long run.