I remember when I learned the principle, “everything rises and falls on leadership” in my Church Leadership class in college. I didn’t like it.
In fact, I outright disagreed.
With all due respect, Mr. Maxwell, how could you possibly put that much pressure on one person?
I mean, come on, there’s aways one person on the team that isn’t pulling his or her weight. One person who doesn’t do what they’re supposed to do when they’re supposed to do it.
You can’t possibly believe that it’s the fault of the leader!
That’s what I used to think, anyway. Prior to actually being a leader. Where I found out that, indeed, everything rises and falls on leadership.
When something goes wrong, who do you think is going to be held accountable? Who has to answer for unmet budgets, missed deadlines or a project that is a complete flop?
My job, as a leader, is to make sure that everyone on my team understands his or her role and is given the tools to accomplish it.
When a team member is not thriving it’s easy to point the finger at them, but really I need to take a step back and identify why it is that they are not thriving. Is there something they do not understand? Are they lacking the training or materials needed to accomplish the task? Are they discouraged? Are they having personal problems? Are they simply in the wrong spot?
There is a reason it’s not working and my job, as the leader, is to figure out what it is… and fix it!
When you assume leadership over something, you are agreeing to be held accountable for every aspect of that thing whether you personally carry out the details or not.
When everyone else goes home, the leader is the one left holding the bag.
Sounds like too much responsibility?
Then, don’t say “yes” to being a leader!
For Mr. Maxwell was right, everything truly does rise and fall on leadership.