Leadership: Anyone Who Has Followers

Leadership is Anyone Who Has Followers

Leadership is Anyone Who Has Followers

Leadership isn’t about position or authority. Leadership is anyone who has followers. Here’s a little test. If you think you’re leading, but you turn around and nobody is following….YOU’RE JUST GOING FOR A WALK!

So, to a large degree leadership is about influence.

In this final video clip from Dead Poet’s Society, Mr. Keating has been blamed for the suicide of one of his students. He is being fired as a teacher from the school system. Watch the student’s reaction and feel the impact of Mr. Keating’s leadership.


In future blog posts, I’ll cover numerous strategies of influence without authority.

  • Sandra S.

    “Leadership” is not a person – a “leader” is a person. Your blog post should be retitled “Leader:  Anyone Who Has Followers” and your corresponding LinkedIn post should be changed from “#leadership is anyone who has followers” to “#leader is anyone who has followers.”

    I know this may sound nitpicky, but, if you’re trying to be a leader, I think it’s your duty to set a good example for your followers, don’t you?

    • Sandra,

      Thanks so much for the feedback and I promise to weigh it carefully.

  • Totally agree that leadership is influence. However, I am not sure if the extent of your leadership is based on the number of followers (maybe, you didn’t mean it that way). If you can make a significant influence on someone, it’s better than marginal influence on many others. I think many social media efforts end up becoming popularity contests instead of measuring true influence.

    Thanks for the interesting view and the touching video!

    • Alex,

      Thanks for the response. Leadership is not a popularity contest. I like the quote from Dag Hammarskjold “It is more noble to give yourself completely to one individual than to labor diligently for the salvation of the masses”. Jesus primarily spent his time with 12. Ann Sullivan is best known as the teacher of Helen Keller. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anne_Sullivan

      Make a difference where you can, within your circle of influence.

      How many apples are in one seed?