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What Leaders Can Learn From World-Class Athletes

What Leaders Can Learn From World-Class Athletes

comfort zone

Are you leading the same way you have always led? Is your leadership style comfortable and safe? Or are you leading from the edge, pushing yourself to become a better leader by stretching your leadership comfort zone?

What can leaders learn from world-class athletes? These athletes are always pushing their bodies to the edge. They are constantly striving to get the maximum potential out of their bodies to become the best in the world at their sport.

I once heard a professional triathlete asked in an interview if they had any injuries going into the world championship. His response was that it is rare for a top-level athlete to be injury-free. Most of us have some minor aches and pains that are being treated. They take their body to the edge. They need to stay on that edge to be world-class.

You can look at these minor aches and pains of a world-class athlete as small mistakes you make as a leader pushing the edge. It is as if your toes or at times even one foot was stepping over the edge. Your balance may have shifted but you still had one foot firmly planted on the ground and you were not at risk of completely falling off the edge.

Room for Mistakes

For anyone to push the edge in any endeavour, you have to be willing to accept the aches and pains or minor mistakes every so often. In leadership, the more trust and credibility you have in the bank with your team, the easier it is to recover from these mess-ups.

Trust Bank

Trust Bank

How you choose to stretch your leadership comfort zone and push yourself to the edge is up to you. A good place to start would be to conduct a 360o evaluation to find out what those around you think of your leadership style. Then either address or strive to fix areas of concern or increase your strengths even further. Some areas to push your leadership could be:

  • Resolving internal conflicts
  • Giving genuine praise often
  • Releasing control and delegate
  • Accepting team members decisions
  • Being more social with your team
  • Sharing some personal stories and vulnerabilities
  • Allowing productive conflict
  • Forbidding workplace bullying
  • Apologizing
  • Striving to be an impeccable role model

Achieving extraordinary leadership results takes courage. (tweet that)

Do you want to be a good leader or an extraordinary leader?

How have you pushed your leadership skill to the edge? Please share with us in the comments below.