Do you have an unconventional approach to leadership? Do you find yourself leading, whatever your position is? Are you always seeking ways to generate more possibilities in business and create a greater difference? Welcome to the joy of being a benevolent leader!
There is a new way of creating business that invites each of us to contribute to the possibilities that will create our future in a different way. Inspired by the newly released book "Benevolent Leadership For A Better World: Unlocking Benevolent Capitalism" by Gary Douglas, Steven & Chutisa Bowman, here are five simple ways you can expand your capacity to be a benevolent leader.
1. Acknowledge You Are A Leader.
Gary Douglas suggests, "Being a leader is being aware and recognising that you are the generator for everything in your life." That makes every single one of us a leader if we choose it. He then says "Leadership is the willingness to know where you're going whether anybody else goes along or not and you're still going to go."
Leading doesn't have to be an uphill battle to get everyone to go with you, you can simply choose a greater possibility, and you'll see who is willing to choose it with you or contribute to you. It is you leading YOU that creates the possibilities for change.
2. BE Greater Than You Were Yesterday.
Instead of reviewing your performance and trying to fix your mistakes, simply ask "What will it take to be greater today than I was yesterday?"
Giving yourself daily encouragement rather than judgement creates a kinder, more empowering organisation. Being greater implies the choice to take a different action. What you BE with your team speaks far louder than what you say.
3. Invite Questions To Create Change.
In a benevolent leader's world, being a catalyst for change doesn't mean rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. It is about asking the questions that can create a future that hasn't yet existed.
"What could we do or be different here that would change our choices for the future?" is a great question to start with. In challenging times, many organisations look at what they can cut back, a benevolent leader looks at what can be expanded.
4. Know That Every Choice Creates!
We are all interconnected. Every choice we make creates the energy, space and consciousness that sustains or confines the relationships between people, the planet and all of the structures of our society (like business and government).
When you include the 'good of all' in your choices, you begin to influence a wider dynamic, maximising possibilities as well as profits. This is where the conscious generation of wealth begins to invite benevolent capitalism. This is the possibility of 'wishing well for all', rather than only seeking personal gain.
5. Embrace Generosity of Spirit
Beyond ethics and social or moral responsibilities is the energy of generosity of spirit. Being generous with the earth. Being generous with the people you work with. Being generous of spirit so that the planet is not destroyed by anger, rage and upset or judgement.
Instead of asking "What can I get from this?" or "How can I compete?", ask "What contribution can I be and receive here?" Your world will expand dynamically if you are willing to listen to your awareness! And if you are willing to lead, your generosity of spirit will effortlessly expand into the lives of others.
Benevolent Leadership Is A Choice In Every Moment
On the weekend, two young boys knocked on my door and playfully asked "Would you like $3 for a $5 note?" I giggled at their cheekiness and gave them the money. Their willingness to ask at such a young age was an inspiration and I loved their innovative approach.
Minutes later there was another knock on the door. Their mother, with the boys in tow, was determined to give the money back and make the boys wrong for asking.
I took them on a different path. I talked to the Mum about creativity and initiative and how cool they were for asking. And with my energy of delight about the whole situation, I showed her that not judging them or making them wrong would create so much more in their world. Everyone left that conversation happy, and a different future was created in just a few moments.
These kids are our future benevolent leaders! What are we choosing to create with them? I received so much more than $5 of value from this tiny adventure. Not everything can be (or should be) measured in money!
This is how easy being a benevolent leader can be. Will you try it?