I’ve always been one to put others before myself, and that’s why my leadership can be different than others. My leadership philosophy is putting others before yourself. I’ve learned through my life that this is the way I resort to whenever anyone needs help, especially in crisis situations. Tending to others’ needs before my own is what I value the most, as healthy or unhealthy as that sounds. This philosophy isn’t for everyone, but I believe it’s a good quality to have in certain situations.
Growing up, my mother had viral vertigo and my dad tended to her needs before even thinking twice about himself. He took the leadership role in our family when my mom was unable to take care of my brother and me. Since then (being 12 years ago), I’ve always had the mentality to check on others to see if they’re okay. If I’m trying to teach people (children even), I always double check to see if anyone else needs help, or if I need to explain something better. I’ll be using my own philosophy for my future when I am an educator, I want to help people understand new concepts. I think that’s why people come to me when they’re in need of help, or when they want to vent.
Listening to what others have to say is a big part of my philosophy. Being on the same page with someone makes it easier for me to help them with their problems. Communication goes along with listening whcich is another aspect leaders should be looking out for when they facilitate, and even when they watch a group do an activity. The motto is ‘your ears should be bigger than your mouth’ and my philosophy stands by that.
When we were in Detroit for LAS in the D, I stepped back for a moment and just listened to the conversations the Jalen Rose student’s were having with one another, and by keeping my ears open, I found out what problems they were running into with one another. The JRLA students resorted to talking loudly above one another to help figure out what was wrong. With that in mind, I stepped in the middle and encouraged one another to listen to what the others had to say.
Putting others before yourself also includes learning people’s different leadership style. At Spark, we took a quiz and the results correlated with what type of leadership style we had. I had compassion which is a huge thing a leader should have for putting others before yourself. Compassionate leaders want to hear feedback on what the participants want to change/what they thought of the activities. Connecting back to the Detroit example, the Jalen Rose student’s really enjoyed our last activity. The facilitator makes the secret path and the students have to step on the right path in order to get across the “ocean.” You could tell in the debrief portion, the JRLA students felt so happy and into the activity. Feedback and debrief is something myself (along with the compassionate folks) love. Communication once again is key.
One final point each person should have for putting others before themselves is understanding patience. These two go hand in hand in leadership, especially when participants are getting frustrated. Even though you want to help them right away, patience is something that needs to be realized to those following putting others before themselves. Understanding is also a big part; you have to try to see where your patricipants are coming from if/when they express their feelings to you. Even if you don’t personally agree, you have to put yourself in their shoes and see what their needs from you are.
Putting others before yourself is a huge part of leadership. It teaches you how to be patient, compassionate, and understanding of other while understanding communication. Your main focus is to get others to open up and express what’s on their mind whether it be frustration, feedback, or just how excited they are.