Leadership lessons from traffic

I gained a valuable leadership lesson from traffic this morning. I never know where inspiration will present itself, but I didn’t expect it to be at an early morning intersection.

This particular intersection has a traffic light, that flashes red one direction and yellow the other early in the morning. As I was running toward it, one car had stopped at the flashing red, and another stopped at the flashing yellow before turning left. And they sat there, polite as can be. I imagined the conversation in chipmunk voices – ” please go ahead,” “no i insist, you first,” “no by all means, after you.”

I’m dancing around, legs cramping, waiting on someone to go so I can continue my run. And I realized that sometimes the most important thing a leader can do it ACT.  I was wishing those drivers had been more decisive and had stepped up more quickly.

I bet there have been situations where you have waited on someone else to make a decision, or set a meeting, or move ahead on a project. And the longer you wait, the more frustrated you got, right?

What if you just took action yourself ? What if you took the initiative to set that meeting or make the decision which moves something ahead? Leaders at all levels of an organization can make an impact by taking action. Whether it is in a business, a nonprofit, a church or at home, the best leaders know when to take action.

In his book EntreLeadership, Dave Ramsey says, “A leader who won’t, or can’t, make decisions is never going to succeed and certainly will never become a full-fledged EntreLeader. When you make the choice to call yourself a leader, or even better yet, aspire to be an EntreLeader, you have to declare that passivity is no longer an option.”

He goes on to say, “You put all you dream about in jeopardy when you are indecisive.”

Wow – all you dream about in jeopardy. That alone incites action. Let’s gooooo!!!!!

The encouraging conclusion that Ramsey reaches is that “there is tremendous energy and peace that decision making brings. Your team is energized by a leader who can make the call as well.”

So here’s your challenge today. No matter what level leader you are, how can you stop being indecisive and ACT? Share in the comments and let’s encourage one another!