Over the past few years we’ve been working with various leaders and teams and have observed patterns for effective leadership, as well as patterns that trip us up and impede our ability to succeed.

It turns out that while fear can be a motivator, it’s more often than not a de-stabilizer.

The purpose of fear is to raise your awareness, not to stop your progress.
–Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Being Free

5 Common Fears Leaders Need to Be Conscious Of

  1. Fear of setting a vision, mission and goals
  2. Fear of delegation and building a team
  3. Fear of accountability and following a process
  4. Fear of failure
  5. Fear of success

Fear #1 – Fear of setting a vision, mission and goals

  • So many of us resist this; why is that? Even when there is a vision and supporting goals, leaders admit to communicating them only once. It takes 7 times for us to process anything new, let alone be part of it; 1 time is insufficient!

Fear #2 – Fear of delegation and building a team

  • If you have no common and agreed upon vision, mission and goals, you have no team. You may ask “why aren’t we a team”? We as leaders sometimes think we can do things on our own. Many leaders feel they are the only ones that have to create and keep everything moving forward. Unless you involve others, positive results are not sustainable (and it’s just plain impractical). Many leaders are afraid to give anything up; they either feel there won’t be anything for them to do, or the other person couldn’t do it as well as they would.

Fear #3 – Fear of accountability and following a process

  • If we ignore it, it may go away. If we don’t create or follow a process, we can’t be measured. A furniture store we’re familiar with never analyzes the reason for their high rate of returns. What are the main causes? What could be done better? Instead, they continue to get a large number of returns. Why not as a team, step back and solve the process issues, and be accountable as owners (or team members) to make the business stronger?

Fear #4 – Fear of failure

  • Most leaders want to lay low and take minimal risk; no one wants to fail or do anything wrong.  With this attitude and set of behaviors, there is little chance that things will go wrong, and there’s also little chance for growth and innovation. We’ve seen the best leaders stretch themselves and take chances, and encourage others to do the same, but it takes a brave soul to think and say “it’s time for change” or “I believe we can improve customer service through training and support, and I’m willing to invest in it.”

Fear #5 – Fear of Success

  • Nelson Mandela said: “We are not afraid of failing, in actuality we are afraid of succeeding beyond our wildest dreams.”
  • Dr. Miles Monroe said “most creativity and un-lived dreams and ideas never get fulfilled because they are buried in the cemetery.”

Why is this? Are you living your passion and your dreams? Is self reflection ongoing and providing you with any “ah-ha” moments? Do you encourage others to become more self aware and live their lives with passion?

Make self reflection a priority, increase your awareness levels, and don’t let fear be a barrier to success!

Here’s a Wealth of Information

Each week we’ll partner with QwikCoach and provide the ability for you to reinforce or expand your knowledge of a prior topic.

Last week’s tip focused on Top 10 Time Wasters.

Go to QwikTips to read more! There are two different versions–one for visitors and one for licensed QwikCoach users.

Help turn your leadership knowledge into leadership action!