Saturday, March 3, 2018

Pinnacles of Great Leadership: Impact, Influence, Inspire

Each day, we experience the world, and those experiences become memories. If we forget an event, it is effectively the same as like we never experienced it at all. Once we die, only those still alive would remember us, which eventually fades as well. Over a few centuries, an existence of a person, that didn't make their name into history, simply vanishes into nothingness. Even those that did make their name into history, such as George Washington, will become less and less relevant over time as the number of people in history increases. As time marches on, as historic records bloom, almost nobody from today would be remembered...except for those that made an impact to the people in the future.

It does feel sad that nothing we do will be remembered, even our existence, but that should also enable us to do whatever we want without holding back. Fear is one emotion that holds us back. We fear how others will perceive us, so we follow traditions and etiquettes to fit in and not feel like the odd one that nobody likes. Even for me, I feel fear as I often do and think outside of the norm. Fear is a useful indicator if you are in eminent danger of being eaten or get hit in the face, otherwise it holds us back more than being useful. As almost nothing we do matters, nor remembered over time, don't let anything, including fear, hold you back.

How do we impact the people in the future? We can wage war and try to take over the world like a few misguided leaders of yesterday, or even today. Or we could follow the footsteps of some of the greatest leaders to fight for better human rights, such as Abraham Lincoln, or Martin Luther King Jr., but they end up being assassinated by the bad guys. While the assassination part is bad, but I don't think that should be a deterrent for us to do great things as we eventually die anyway -- dying today or a decade later means nothing (fear is telling you different, but don't let it). Or be the next Steve Jobs to lead the next generation of technology breakthroughs that make life better...until the next breakthrough. Not everyone will be remembered and make an impact like some of the great leaders in our history, but you never know until you try. Without anything holding you back, try to make a impact and be the next great leader! Even if you don't get recorded in history or change something that impacts the life of others, I believe your life will be more fulfilling than not trying at all.

Aside from making an impact yourself, other great ways to make an impact is by influencing and inspiring others to do the same. There is only so much one person can do, so in order to make the most impact, the more people the better. The way to get more people to be excited on a common cause is by influencing and inspiring them. 

Fear, coincidentally, can be used to influence others to do what you want as many bad leaders have done in the past, so let's not do that. To influence someone, I think the first thing is to understand that person's desires and what makes them happy and motivated. Once you know that, let's say that they like candy or like to organize things, then you could use that in your persuasion by offering those things. It might seem sly but it's a win-win situation. A more direct and expensive approach is to pay someone with money and get service in return, a.k.a a job. You can also influence others by earning their respect and therefore inspiring them to your cause.

Inspiring others is a bit hard as I believe you must earn someone's respect first. Once the person respects you, and then you do great things that could potentially inspire them to follow the same footsteps.

As almost nothing we do matters, nor even remembered, don't let fear influence how to live your life. The only thing that transcends time is the impact that we leave behind, such  as improvements to human rights or technology innovations, so do try to make an impact with your life. To make the greatest impact, get others to join your cause by influencing and inspiring them. Let's make the world a better place for us and our kids! :)

This is the last post and the pinnacle of the Great Leadership series. If you liked this article, help make a bigger impact by sharing with your colleagues, friends, and family -- influence & inspire them to do great things with their lives!

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