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Are you leader enough to be the first follower?

This has been one of my favourite videos to use in Change Management training for years. In three minutes, Derek Sivers simiplifies what we need to do to bring people along on a change journey.

What I love even more is his message about the importance of being the first follower. I encourage you to reflect on your organisation and ask yourself:

  • Do we tell everyone to be a leader (which isn't realistic), or do we encourage people to be first followers?

  • How do we reward and recognise first followers? Do we praise them for playing an important role in driving change, or do we overlook their contribution?

  • How do we redefine leadership to encompass the many roles required to drive change, rather than only recognising the people who come up with big ideas as leaders?

  • Does our current definition of leadership include bias? Does it exclude those who lead quietly or with a style different from our own?

Only by creating an environment where first followers are celebrated will we really be able to drive change and innovation in organisations.

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