The Fine Line of Leadership


Like it or not, leaders walk a fine line…

In every interaction, every decision, every day.

If we don’t give the right attention to our steps

We can lose our way.

The fine line between recognition and manipulation

The fine line between teaching and telling

The fine line between encouraging and enabling

The fine line between caring and controlling

The fine line between empowerment and passivity

The fine line between inquiry and indecision

The fine line between community and competition

The fine line between patience and denial

The fine line between courageous and reckless

 And so on.

The words we use

The behaviors we reinforce

What we notice

It all matters.

You’ve probably noticed that tightrope walkers carry a long pole.

They use it to adjust for errors, distractions or outside forces.

Knowing it will help them stay centered under stress.

Every leader needs a counterbalance.

Invite others to observe you and share honest feedback

Allow sufficient downtime to keep your mind alert

Learn to focus on your current task

Reflect before you act

  Live your values

Listen carefully

Bring laughter into your day

Create a vision that guides your choices

Prioritize your important tasks before the urgent noise

You can try to avoid the fine line.

Or pretend it isn’t there.

But one day you may look back

And wonder how you came to be so far off course.

How have you experienced the fine line?

Where is your counterbalance?

A well-developed sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to your steps as you walk the tightrope of life. – William Arthur Ward

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