As a leader, you grow simply by waking up. Isn’t that true? You have leaders and thinkers speaking into your life all day, every day. Today, you will read a book (or portions of it); you will listen to a podcast; you will see a short YouTube video; you will engage in high-level, vision-place conversations with your leader. You will have conversations with your friends and peers that are vision-centric. So, as a leader, you have all these things coming into your life, and you don’t even have to plan for it or seek it out, necessarily.
The wisdom gap occurs because the people who work for you—those you lead—don’t have this kind of atmosphere every day. They’re working in cubicles. They aren’t getting the same resources. They’re not part of leadership networks and calls that you are a part of. They don’t have a personal development plan like you do. People you are leading don’t have the bandwidth—the environment—the atmosphere—to grow.
The wisdom gap is the space between your leadership capacity and theirs, and it’s widened every day by the difference of atmospheres that you live in. You wake up, and bam—you’re in an environment of growth. They wake up, and bam—they’ve got stuff to do. They are in the doing mode; you are in the thinking mode. Hence, that gap continues to grow.
So what can you do to minimize it? The truth is, it always has to be there, in some capacity—otherwise, your leadership wouldn’t be necessary. But the healthiest organizations and teams continually work to minimize and shrink that gap. Leaders can do this in one key way: make sure your team has access to growth resources just like you.
What book are you reading this week? Why don’t they read it, as well? What podcasts or programs are growing you? Why don’t you recommend them to your team? Don’t expect yourself to be able to assimilate and regurgitate 100% of the material you’re taking in. That’s like a parent eating in order to give life to her children. No—they have to eat, too. So make sure they’re equipped, resourced, and empowered to grow as leaders. Then, the gap will narrow, and you will be able to trust them with more and more responsibilities.
Sam Chand has served as senior pastor, college president, chancellor and president emeritus. A consultant and mentor to leaders of leaders, Sam Chand’s singular vision for his life is to help others succeed. Sam Chand develops leaders through consultations, books and speaking engagements. Leaders are using Sam Chand's books as handbooks worldwide in leadership development.
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