Lead on Purpose

Promoting Leadership Principles in Product Management

Why true leaders sacrifice

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“Leadership is not a license to do less, it’s a responsibility to do more.”

What makes leaders different from everyone else? How do they build trust with the people they serve? Why do they forego their own interests on behalf of those they lead?

These questions refer to true leaders. The type of leaders whose followers will march behind them no matter where they’re headed. The type of leaders who inspire feelings of safety and commitment.

Leaders Eat LastThese are the leaders Simon Sinek writes about in LEADERS EAT LAST—Why Some Teams Pull Together and Others Don’t. They walk into difficult situations. They put their teams’ comfort and security above their own. They succeed because they inspire feelings of security and a higher purpose. They sacrifice.

Sinek offer great advice on what makes great leaders:

Leadership is a responsibility that hinges almost entirely on character. Leadership is about integrity, honesty and accountability – all components of trust.

Sinek tells us how to move forward as successful leaders:

Leadership comes not from telling us what we want to hear, but rather what we need to hear. To be a true leader you need to start with telling the truth.

It’s not how smart the people in the organization are; it’s how well they work together that is the true indicator of future success or the ability to manage through struggle.

In another of Sinek’s great writings, START WITH WHY—How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action, he distills the why into one clear statement:

People don’t buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it.

If you need to take your leadership to the next level, dig in to Simon’s books and you’ll find the answers.

The Product Management Perspective: Leadership is at the core of successful product management. Because you rely on people from other teams (dev, sales, etc.) for the success of your product, you need to lead them. You need to make sure they will give everything they have to make your product a success. Though his books are not specifically about product management, Sinek has the answers to product success.

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