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Ayvin Rogers - 07 May 2019
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The fundamental point I have learned is that a good leader leaves ego behind and builds a team that shares a vision and works for an idea. It is not about the leader. It is all about the idea and the leader pulls things together to make it a reality.

I am very pleased to be a new member of Campfire Convention. I really like the thoughts and motivation behind it. It gives me fresh hope for a co-operative and collaborative world.

As there are a lot of projects being initiated and networked on Campfire, I thought my first post may be most useful if I reposted a blog I wrote in 2014 about leadership and what qualities a good leader has.

I attended a regional conference in 2014 for cultural leaders in the South West of England. The theme was 'What does a leader look like?' My description of a leader is based upon my own experience as a volunteer leading numerous community projects and organisations over the last 20 years, and the collective knowledge and input from over 80 cultural leaders at that conference.

Leadership Qualities

The fundamental point I have learned is that a good leader leaves ego behind and builds a team that shares a vision and works for an idea. It is not about the leader. It is all about the idea and the leader pulls things together to make it a reality.

How to successfully manage the process is the challenge. Words repeatedly used at the conference to describe the qualities of a good leader were:

Attitude - Leadership is about attitude and approach, not qualifications and training.

Vision - filter all your dreams down to one or two that you and your team really love.

Excellence - strive for the best. Excellence generates support from all stakeholders.

Enthusiasm - communicate the belief in your vision.

Confidence. Have confidence in yourself and build it in others. Lack of confidence is the biggest barrier to action.

Trust your team - why are they with you if you don’t trust them?

Risk taking without gambling recklessly, experiment, try. Believe in success.

Rebelliousness - don’t accept convention is best. Challenge the norm. Push boundaries.

Judgement - when exploring something new, you may not know the answer and there may be no right or wrong way; use your experience and knowledge to guide you.

Honesty - openness identifies challenges that can be resolved.

Calm - panic can lead to bad decisions and wobble team confidence.

Integrity - to your values and those of your team.

Responsibility - own up to things that go wrong.

Make a difference. Stand up and be counted.

Commitment and determination to see something through.

Perseverance to overcome problems.

Stamina - in it for the long haul.

Patience - problems always arise and may delay progress. Rome wasn't built in a day.

Empathy towards people. Insight, sensitivity and goodwill towards team members helps bring out their best and helps anticipate and avoid potential conflict.

Listening - your way may not be the best.

Respect for others and differing views.

Seek diversity in your team - it gives new ideas, ways of working, culture and approach.

Reduce barriers to become involved. This could involve approaches to work such as employing someone to achieve a task where payment is not based on the hours they work but on the value they bring to the project. This gives team members the flexibility to do the job in the time of their own choosing and not be restricted to regular office hours. As long as they deliver the work within agreed timelines, they can work around commitments in their personal life such as childcare and looking after family elders.

Collaboration - other individuals and organisations can help you add excellence. You don’t have to be alone. Together, you can share resources, expertise and a greater reach.

Decide - the team can advise, but you should be decisive when needed.

Priority/select - lots of options to develop an idea may be open to you. Trying to do too much and diluting your efforts without proper resources and support could lead to loss of excellence. Stay focused.

Then there are all the normal processes of good project management: Research; plan; resource; action; monitor; evaluate; share learning; adapt; repeat on a loop.

3 Comments

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Pascale Barrett

Brilliant

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Andie Brazewell

Love this @Ayvin Rogers (Ayvin) can I use this on my leadership training programmes?
Welcome to Campfire Ayvin
Andie x

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Ayvin Rogers

Hi Andie. You are very welcome to share with participants on your leadership training programmes - and any other way that you think would be useful to others. My blog was a result of so many others sharing what they knew - I was a lucky beneficiary! The conference I attended was organised in partnership with www.cloreleadership.org - well worth checking out if you are not familiar with them - leadership specialists in the arts, cultural and creative industries sector.

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