Leaders Can"t Expect Others To Do The Work
While it is true that a leader should involve others, and should not and cannot "do it all himself," he must not adopt the attitude that he is "above" doing the work, and all he needs to do is "direct the ship.
" While at times that may be effective management in the corporate world, it is almost invariably not a good approach in organizations, where there is such a heavy reliance on volunteers who are to a large degree somewhat untrained.
Organizations and corporations are quite different in terms of their operations.
One of the major differences is that in business, people are hired to do a specific job or function either based on their qualifications or on training, and it is their full time employment and careers, and undoubtedly their major work emphasis, particularly during work hours.
On the other hand, most volunteer leaders have outside work endeavors that support their families and their life style.
These leaders get involved for a number of reasons, from belief and dedication to the mission of the organization, to, in the worst case scenario, are ego driven.
In business, people are assigned jobs or positions based on training, effectiveness, qualifications or excellence (expertise).
Organization leaders volunteer and are generally elected.
In some organizations, election is based on expertise, experience, and qualifications, while in many others, it is more of a popularity contest.
In still other scenarios, there is such a dearth of leadership that an organization is thrilled to take "any living and breathing body" who volunteers to take the position.
Since many organizations do not adequately train their potential leaders, people ascend to leadership positions often ill prepared to act as leaders should.
Therefore, these people often want to be leaders and be treated as such, but either never realized what was involved, or feel it isn't their job to do it.
From a motivation standpoint, volunteers will almost always feel better about themselves and what they are being asked to do, if they see a leader "roll up his sleeves," and never ask someone else to do something that he wouldn't do.
The clearest example of this I've ever witnessed was actually in the business world, in an extremely busy diner in New Jersey.
The husband, wife, and wife's father who owned the diner worked as hard or harder than any of their staff.
The husband arose early, went to the fish and meat markets for the freshest and finest quality foods, and prepared the dishes in the kitchen.
The wife worked the reception area and cash register, and greeted everyone, seated everyone, always made sure tables were cleaned (not being too proud to wipe down a table, etc.
Her father bussed tables, helped out both in the kitchen and on the service floor, and worked harder than any of the bus staff.
It would have been impossible for any of the wait or bus staff to complain that too much was being demanded of them, because the owners were chipping in, and leading by example.
I have never observed a harder worker, more efficient or effective run restaurant or workers than at this diner.
Anyone can say they want to be a leader, some expecting to enjoy the "glory" of leadership.
However, the reality is that if one wants to effectively lead, he must lead by example, and if he does so, his volunteers will be willing to "go that extra mile.