Seth Godin on Uncomfortable Leadership

A New York Times Best Selling Author of 20 books and cultural thought leader, Seth Godin is a beloved speaker and has a knack for helping professionals “level up” and become the best versions of themselves. As an entrepreneur and marketing professional, Godin has been a pioneer of “permission marketing” and “ethical online direct marketing.” While not only being inducted into both the Digital Marketing Hall of Fame and the Marketing Hall of Fame, he has also cultivated one of the most popular online leadership and business blogs, maintaining daily posts for more than a decade. Needless to say, he has a few thoughts on leading others.

In his book Tribes, Godin explains the scarcity of great leadership and why the avoidance of discomfort keeps people from picking up the leader baton:

Leadership is scarce because few people are willing to go through the discomfort required to lead. The scarcity makes leadership valuable. If everyone tries to lead all the time, not much happens. It’s discomfort that creates the leverage that makes leadership worthwhile. In other words, if everyone could do it, they would, and it wouldn’t be worth much.

If leadership were easy, then we would have a world full of leaders. However, the most important thing is to look where the discomfort is, from fear of failure to not settling or being content. Usually, that’s where opportunity lies for you to rise up and lead others.

Godin continues this thought:

When you identify the discomfort, you’ve found the place where a leader is needed.

If you’re not uncomfortable in your work as a leader, it’s almost certain you’re not reaching your potential as a leader.

Take Godin’s advice and look for areas of discomfort—and be willing to be uncomfortable.

Who are some of your favorite leaders? What have you learned by studying their work? Let us know in the comments section below!


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