When we hear the word leadership, we tend to picture a person in a suit heading a large corporation, or the head of a large nation. But Sadhguru tells us that everyone is a leader in their own sphere of life. He also conveys to us the very essence of being a true leader.
Sadhguru: If your leadership is by accident, and not by any great vision or capability, I think people would do better without such leadership. Instead of having a stupid leader, if they don’t have a leader, people will do something, you know?
A stupid leader can cause so much disaster that without a leader people may do something better. It may be a little chaotic but still they may do something better. Essentially, what a leader means is that knowingly or unknowingly you have taken the destiny of a few people into your hands. You have taken up that responsibility. When I say a leader, you need not necessarily be the leader of a nation or a large group of people. You are running a family; you are a leader, isn't it? In some way you have taken the destiny of a couple of people’s lives into your hands, isn't it?
So, whoever is willing to take responsibility for one more life is a leader. It is just a question of the scale. According to one’s capabilities people will choose the scale of leadership but everybody is a leader in some way. At least, if you have chosen to take your destiny into your own hands, you are a leader, aren’t you? Only if you are a hobo, you are not a leader. You know what is a hobo?
An American tourist was visiting the U.K. A local person who was taking him around showed him a certain estate and said, “Here lives an aristocrat.”
The American asked, “What is that? An astronaut?”
“No, an aristocrat.”
“What is that?”
The Englishman was surprised that there could be a human being who didn’t know what an aristocrat is.
“Oh, you don’t know what an Aristocrat is? An aristocrat means he doesn't have to do any work. Everything comes to him one way or the other. He always has a good place somewhere. Wherever he goes he has a ringside seat and he does nothing, he lives off other people,” said the Englishman.
‘Oh that, in America we call them hobos.’
So that’s a hobo. Unless you’re a hobo, in some capacity you are a leader, isn't it? So once you understand you are a leader, it means either you have taken your own destiny into your hands or you have also taken the destiny of a few more lives into your hands. This is a certain responsibility.
If you want to lead any group of people, first thing is you must make sure that all of them fall in love with you. Yes? So, how do we do that? Do we give them a love pill? There is no such thing. If you want everybody to fall in love with you, first thing is that you must fall in love with all of them. Instantly. You must do it instantly, they will take their time. They will slowly, very slowly give in. They are privileged people. Once you are a leader, you are not the privileged one; you must understand, they are the privileged ones because they have their choices, you don’t.
So, if you want to be a leader at your workplace, it is after all a major part of your life in terms of number of hours per day. You probably spend more hours at your workplace than anywhere else, isn't it? Isn't it so, for most of you? The number of hours that you spend at your workplace is maximum compared to anything else. When this is so, is it not important that we make this into a beautiful experience?
Editor’s Note: Get the INSIGHT ebook, a mini compilation of talks from previous INSIGHT programs. Snippets of Sadhguru’s wisdom about business and leadership alongside inspiring and thought-provoking case studies of eminent entrepreneurs including Harsh Mariwala, KV Kamath and GM Rao, make for a must-read for all business leaders.