Developing future leaders is the pinnacle of leadership and creates a lasting legacy.
Becoming a successful leader is a long process, but the rewards are great. Still, the journey never really ends. Because a true leader keeps giving back by teaching others to become leaders, too.
There are a few reasons why this is important.
Firstly, having just one leader creates an organizational bottleneck. In other words, when just one person makes all the decisions, the rest of the company becomes passive and dependent. The authors even compare traditional leadership models to a herd of buffaloes.
Instead of blindly following a head buffalo, truly effective organizations are organized like a flock of geese, flying in a V formation and continually rotating who is at the head to oppose the wind.
Another reason having just one leader doesn’t make sense: when that person quits, how can anyone else be ready to take on the load?
Before that time comes, it’s crucial to create a culture of leadership within the organization and empower team members to become leaders themselves.
How? Simply include them in the managerial process, allowing them to partake in key decisions. This allows them to develop their own leadership skills.
Developing future leaders is not only an organizational necessity; it’s also the final step in the ladder; the pinnacle of all you do: creating fellow leaders who can act autonomously and also rear their own new leaders will effectively reproduce your work to infinity.
Consider Socrates’ model. The Ancient Greek philosopher’s student, Plato, founded an academy that passed on knowledge to generations of students. Among these students was Aristotle, who later became an important mentor of Alexander the Great. Leaders crafted future leaders.
And, there’s one more important benefit of teaching others: seeing other people grow and follow in your footsteps is greatly rewarding. In fact, it’s the greatest source of personal fulfillment there is!