If there’s anything that the current political drama of the US elections has brought to my mind apart from the many other things, is this space around what makes Leaders stand out and why the greatest and finest leaders almost always emerge from conflicting contexts, which at times are allowed to emerge so that the result gets amplified against a bleak contrast! Join me here as we take a quick look into this space and try to read through all that has unfolded and what may develop in the coming days and months ahead! So here we go!
Regardless of your political affiliation, for a minute take a pause and try to reflect what is really been played out! Do you really think the President of the United States of America would not have had enough ground intelligence all the way to let him know what was unfolding! Likewise do you really think that the pursuit of power would end up making the opposition so reckless and desperate so as to leave their tell take signs and signatures all over the place- only to get caught (even if we were to assume they were involved in any wrong doing!) The fact is that the “truth” not the “contextual reality” is in between those two extremes!
The whole fabric of political thought and social construct has evolved as nations have. With time, these different thoughts and approaches to the societal challenges have been dealt with varying level of success and failures and this has what in turn reinforced political ideologies- one over the other! Few societies have always sought to find solutions using limited routes (these are nations with the fabled two party system), while there are few others who present a myriad of complicated network of political outfits/ thoughts and affiliations and then there are a few still where there is only one chosen way and anything else, is a dream! Irrespective of which type of society you inherit, as long as there remains a respectful dynamic balance between the ideologies in the given society and their focus remains aligned to the greater good, these societies tend to make rapid and visible progress, but as human greed and self-serving narratives begin to come in- you have the whole destabilizing narrative getting built up all over the place and how does that look, well like a club sandwich- where the alternate layers of opposing ideologies tend to govern different layers of the governance model! The result- well you have a filled stomach with no nutrients! A society with more of noise and no music! It is within these contexts that you have leaders walking their path! As long as they are aligned to the whole concept of serving the greater good and doing the right bargain at each step, like a trapeze artist, they seem skilled, elegant, graceful and purpose driven, the moment there is even a slightest deviation from that rigor- you have the great visible fall with the real reasons never really known! So how do leaders really manage to walk through this fog? How do they keep moving despite and inspite of all the noise around?
Focus is the key, a laser sharp focus on what the purpose is for the journey that they have undertaken and a flawless ability to define what is that is negotiable and what is not- this is perhaps what keeps real leaders and real visionaries on the chosen path irrespective of what’s unfolding around! Alongside this what you do need- (whether you lead a nation or lead a small group) is that critical inner circle- which rallies around their leader and believe in the aspirational goals as set and envisioned by them! This, I believe is the most fundamental bed rock on which all stories of success after wading through a storm rest upon! Everything else goes over this fundamental foundation- talent, competence, opportunity, social construct and any other parameter that you may choose all of them or rather any of them will only be able to play their part and show some impact only and only if the foundational requirements are met! The foundation is what goes on to determine how high and how farther the ideology of the group as led by the leader will reach and what is the approach that one will take as they wade through the compelling situations and storms around them! But how does this approach really help?
Well, pretty simple! You see once you have a leader (who essentially has clarity of purpose and direction) a powerful inner circle ( who are as committed as the leader in every aspect of the game) then everything boils down to the space of timing things and event right and the more apt that timing, greater and desirable is the impact of what manifests and needless to say it goes in the direction of the desired outcomes with minimal resistance and even if there is resistance, like a well oiled machine- different layers of the inner circle wage the battle and the leader is empowered and free to stay focused only on battles that matter, for he knows very well that for everything else there is a team that is watching his back, just as the leader provides an every vigilant watch over the shoulder of the inner circle.
Unlike the much hyped movies that we often look upto for leadership masterclasses, real life leaders are almost often quite the opposite especially at a time when they are navigating a storm, among some significant traits is a hallmark radio silence- dignified silence! This one attribute is often more then enough to confuse and irritate nay sayer’s and critics alike! Silence often becomes the most potent weapon of choice especially when it is used in the context of leading the masses! This is the stuff where great leaders show the world, when silence is golden and why it is so!
Walking through the storm was and never has been or will ever be, anyone’s cup of tea! It takes the select few to arrive at the scene to show the ones’ around how it is done; needless to say there are many leaders who end up drowned and torn apart by the force of the storm when and if they end up miscalculating the whole science and art of knowing it well enough to tame it and overpower it! Silence is the first step to know the storm and that alone sets apart the icons from the amateurs!
Unknown to the people who rally around, the leaders’ too are vulnerable and even as they don’t allow their vulnerabilities to be known to the many around (for obvious reasons) the inner circle knows them too well and that’s hwy they are called as the inner circle, because it is when the leader becomes vulnerable in that moment of the ongoing war, that the inner circle steps in and lifts up the leader so that an empowered leader is then ready to taken upon that challenge even more resolutely!
I leave you here with these thoughts for now, even as there are many more facets to the wading through the storm, as long as you know this basic approach and foundation around it, you will be able to read through further into the evolving facets depending upon who the leader is and what the real context around that leader is! Think around and look for yourself what are the leaders around you and what are the storms you see them taming around! As a Leader what is that you are wading through? What is your storm right now!
Ciao for now, will be back soon with another one! Until then stay safe and stay wise!