Earlier this week, we talked briefly about expansion. Today, I want to give you a process that helps you engage and empower the people around you. I call this process expanding and it’s designed to help you be a true serving leader. Serving leadership is based on the idea that you help others expand their capabilities and possibilities.
In the past, growing was very hard work and it took a long time. Today, with all our connectivity and collaboration capabilities, we are able to do incredible things together.
I believe there are three stages to expanding. They include engage, empower, and expand. They are a continuous circle for personal growth and expansion. Today we can do many things that were unavailable to earlier generations. We are working in a world where our dreams can become our new reality. This new power has the potential to change the world. We must develop these skills if we hope to be the change the world.
The first stage is to engage other people where they are. I find that many people have lost faith in their own potential. Extended periods of unemployment or working in a fear-based business culture have slowed down people’s ability to dream and grow. You must find a way to connect to people. You must provide a place where people can share their ideas without ridicule or disbelief. If you can engage people with your questions and support, you can help them make a huge contribution to the world.
The second stage is to empower others. Once you have engaged people, you must determine what skills they need to be empowered. A person can only be empowered from where they are today. You must learn to help them by providing the skills they need to achieve their goals and dreams. Self-confidence is critical to the empowering process. We must be willing to allow others to move at their own speed. Good leaders are good at getting people to move towards a common goal. Great leaders are able to create a greater good through others by providing the support, education, and belief in their dreams.
As a coach, I find that if I can provide the environment and the tools, people can accomplish amazing things. It’s like a child riding a bike for the first time, you can help guide them, but the child grows and learns balance at their own speed, based on their own beliefs. A coach must be willing to provide the support, but it comes down to the person providing the will and the focus they need to succeed. This is not new, parents and families have been providing this for generations.
The third and final stage of this process is we must help others expand their view of themselves and the opportunities they have in the world. We must be willing to challenge their thinking in how successful they can become. You must be willing to see the person as what they can be, not what they are now. Over the years, I have discovered most successful men and women have a person in their lives who believed in them before they believed in themselves. To be successful during the expansion stage you must be willing to suspend your own beliefs to support another’s growth. This means that you must work on yourself as much as you work on others. If you want to be known as someone who helps grow great people, you must continue to grow yourself.
Great mentors are willing to help others grow beyond their reach. Expanding happens at different rates for different people. This is why it’s so critical to engage people where they are and not where we want them to be. It’s a balancing act to do this, but the results far exceed your dreams.
Finally, this process continues to repeat throughout your life. You will be the mentor and then the mentee. People who help grow people are always in the growth process themselves. We must learn to place a higher value on our personal development if we hope to reach our potential as a society.
Next Tuesday, we share with you several key tools to help you during the engagement phase of the expanding process. Over the next several weeks, we will give you many different tools to help you help others grow. I have discovered that the more you help others grow, the more you grow and, finally, the more the society grows. It’s a triple win that can help you grow exponentially. See you here next week.