in Career Development

Spotted: A Leader Without Title

Photo by Tanmay Vora at Sonamarg, Kashmir, India

He must be about 16 year old Kashmiri boy – fair skin and bluish eyes that radiated amazing confidence. He was also our escort as we took a 4 Km. ride on a pony to climb a steep snow clad mountain and reach a glacier. We intended to visit the snow glacier that attracted a lot of tourists, and hence hired a pony who could take us there.

While we climbed, he managed our fear of riding a pony, he counseled us and guided us on various interesting spots en route – not something that we expected from a boy this young. He did his job well.

I was impressed with his conduct and on our way back, I asked him about where he belonged to. His answer impressed me even more.

He mentioned that he traveled from Srinagar to Sonamarg (about 85 Kms and about 2740m above sea level) to “serve” the “guests” like us.

We were tourists, but he referred to us as “guests” and his job (for which he got a meager reward) as “service”. He took his work to the next level and for me, he was clearly a leader without a title.

This also got me thinking – what if well-bred, educated professionals stop looking at their jobs as a “transaction” and start treating it as a “service”? How different our workplaces would be if we adopted an attitude to do our best without getting confined by boundaries of documented roles and responsibilities? What if we started focusing on our “contributions” more than our “acquisitions”? How different our workplaces would be then?

We need more such servant leaders who need no title to lead!

  1. Correct! We want many such Leaders without title. :) it will surely make much difference. One should not look up their job as Just JOB. They should rather try to make today better than yestersay as said by Robin Sharma :)

    • Thanks Chintak – Robin Sharma’s “A Leader who had no title” is still on my reading list! Thanks for expressing yourself here.

  2. Yes very true…
    Its all about how you take up the things. But one thing is sure – people with such sincere attitude will achieve more then people who believe just in casual working style and finishing their day rather then having a passionate, sincere, honest and respectful attitude towards any work they are doing…
    Whatever you are doing, do it with full enthusiasm and for sure your outcome will be glowing!

  3. Nice article.

    This is definitely true. This is one of the trait of a good leader. A leader is the one who follow “path goal” theory.

    But if you look the other way round of this story, then you can imagine that is is “Necessity”.
    He is is a boy who need to fulfill his requirement of food & shelter. As he don’t have any other way of other than doing this labor work?

    Its 100% true, we should adopted an attitude to do our best. A leader should always be ready to learn whatever good quality that he can see in others.

    • A lot of people do what they are doing out of sheer “neccessity” – I agree. Question is, how many of them treat their work as ‘service’ and how many of take initiative to walk that extra mile for customers?

  4. Marvelous! “Servant Leader” – what a way to put it! Thanks for sharing the experience.

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