Leading by getting outta the way

Leading by getting outta the way


Life just keeps getting stranger for this nerd.

People in increasing numbers tell ask me for guidance and more, and it's really awkward. I'm not the most social guy in the world, and yet if I can help, I gotta follow through.

Problems abound, like as a nerd, I have low needs for attention, and overall don't view myself as a leader. So, my deal is to keep giving away any influence or even power I might accumulate, after exercising my limited skills. Here's the thing in brief, for most situations:

1. focus; get to the point

2. decide to decide (major problem in Washington, or anyplace people fear to take risks)

3. find people who are good at getting stuff done; delegate to them, and connect them

4. get outta the way

5. stay engaged, mostly talk lots about the efforts of the effective people. that means nudging them almost to the point of annoyance.

Bonus: bridge people doing similar work and/or who are effective and share the spirit of
getting stuff done.


This doesn't fit definitions of "leadership" but it seems to help out a lot. I'd like a better term than "not-leadership" and would appreciate help.



Claude DiDomenica

Hello Craig,
Personally, I think you are a leader — but you are just not comfortable with the term.
There are many folks like you (me included) that are "reluctant leaders" — we'd rather be doing something else, but life has a different plan for us, in spite of our protestations to the contrary.
If you seek an alternate term, "facilitator" should suffice. But, its still a form of leadership, Craig…
My 2 cents,


The word that immediately came to my mind was also 'facilitator.' It's a perfectly cromulent word that describes exactly what you do, dear Craig. Thank you for your efforts and time. Evelyn in Iowa City

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