Step 1 is all about your Inner Space: What is your definition of Leadership?
- Do you see yourself as Leader?
- Do you know what makes you powerful and unique as a Leader?
- What are your fears about being a Leader?
- What values do you choose to integrate into your leadership?
When considering your Inner Space, also remember to think about what kind of space you need that gives you energy and refuels you. If you are an extrovert that might mean giving yourself plenty of space that involves other people, activity and stimulation. If you are like me and more of an introvert, that might mean creating lots of quiet and alone space and time to just be rather than more doing. No right or wrong but you do need to know what kind of space you need!
Step 2 is all about Outer Space:
So when I think of being in outer space the first thing that comes to mind is about being weightless and floating around aimlessly. Not exactly how we want to be seen as Leaders! So, how do YOU want to be seen as, as a Leader? Do me a favor… stand up and extend your arms out and then twirl around. Ok, did you do it? Well, if you did, I hope you aren’t dizzy, but if you didn’t just think of the several feet around your body as your energy field – or if that is too woo-woo of a term, let’s call it the your physical leadership space. It’s the physical space you take up as a leader – a few feet in front of you – a few feet behind and all around you. That is the space that people can literally feel you. And what are they feeling? Are they feeling a confident, supportive, loving, visionary leader or are they feeling a negative, controlling, unhappy, fearful leader? Even if your words are saying one thing, the energy you are giving off says another.
Think about when you are walking around the office, and there are some people you see and you would go out of your way to be closer to them and then there are others, you literally want to run away from. You can feel them several feet away… so what do people feel from you as they approach? And what do you WANT them to feel? Be intentional and create the kind of space that is inviting for others – figure out what that means for you.
Step 3 is all about Creating Space for Others:
If Leadership is about creating the space for others to thrive and you’ve done your inner and outer work as a Leader, then, then comes the fun part – intentionally creating the space for others to shine. Do you know what kind of space your people thrive in? If so, are you doing everything possible to create this for them? If you don’t know what kind of space they thrive in, then the easiest thing to do is ask them! You can do this individually or as a group. Ask what is it that they need to be their best, to do their best work or to meet their goals. Do they need freedom, support, structure, appreciation, fun, or more passion?
Every person and every group will be different but this is the fun part of leading – it’s always different and never routine. As a leader, once you know what they need and want, you can intentionally create this space. It’s not about giving in or becoming soft but rather being smart, strategic and getting the job done in the most efficient and effective way possible.
Before I start working with a new group of people, I always sit quietly for a few minutes and ask myself what I think this group needs. I always start with the basics; love, compassion, fun, joy, authenticity, and the feeling of being seen, heard and gotten. I’ve never worked with a group that hasn’t wanted these things! I then sit in the room for a few minutes and energetically breathe these things into the room and set the intention that every person who walks in, will feel these things. Then once we gather as a group, I also ask what they need, and from there we’ve created “Our Space” – the space that we each need to be our best. It works every time.
So it really is simple. Discover Your Inner Space. Define Your External Space and Create a Powerful Space for others to thrive. Leadership begins within and extends thru the space you create and the hearts you touch.