I conduct all sorts of training in the Philippines that include leadership as topic. I see this pattern all the time whenever participants complain about situations that hinder them from achieving whatever objectives or initiative they have.
The complaints typically range from various causes. Uncooperative employees, incompetent staff, impossible bosses, limited resources, unfair arrangements, unrealistic goals, the list go on.
You’ve probably heard of the stories. Perhaps, you’ve griped a few times yourself. I know I have. Let me make this clear, complaining does not disqualify you from being a leader but it does hinder you from taking leadership actions. If have been complaining about a situation for some time and feel that you are in a situation that render you as a victim or without power to change it, we are hindering ourselves from leading.
This is not about control or about being in control. It’s about ownership. Leaders take ownership of the situation they are in and constantly ask what can be done to improve this situation? Leaders are only temporarily defeated. When they fall, they dust themselves off and find their way back into the fight. Whatever that fight is. If they see lack of cooperation, they explore that situation and figure out how to get cooperation. If they lack resources, they get creative.
They also realize that leadership is not confined to leading one’s staff, that it extends to leading peers, even bosses. They build strong alliances with others and work with them to achieve shared aspiration. They are optimistic that a better future can be achieved. They may complain, but they don’t complain very long. They eventually take charge and try to change the situation.