A couple of nights ago it happened. I committed the equivalent of a Jon Acuff Assumed Hug blunder by attempting a one man standing ovation.
My family and I were attending an awards ceremony for my daughters senior class, when a man dressed in Air Force blue stepped to the podium and read an appointment to the Air Force Academy for one of my daughter’s classmates. It was a very moving moment, causing the room to break out into applause.
Yours truly thought we would take it to another level and stood to my feet to try to initiate a standing ovation. There in front of God, all the seniors, their parents and an Air Force officer, I was left to fly solo.
The next 21 seconds might have felt like a long time to an ordinary man, but not to me, dog gone it. “This is a military appointment, you unpatriotic infidels, stand up for this kid.” ran through my mind. But it was no use. Still Hans Solo.
Every day there are men and women who assume they are leading their team to the right place only to find themselves standing alone. Someone once said, “If you are leading a group and turn around and find no one is following, you are merely taking a walk.”
You may feel like you have the right cause or maybe even have the right one (like I did . . . I am not letting it go), and still not be influencing anyone else.
The gap between a leaders expectations and a followers actions is usually more about their relationship than it is about their cause. If you sense a chasm, or even a crack, it might be time to do some relational inventory.
The next time you think you are leading, you might want to turn around and look over your shoulder. If no one is on their feet, you are guilty of the Standing Oh-No.
Have you ever felt like you were standing alone for something you believed in?
Randy is an author, speaker, executive coach, and the CEO of InteGREAT Leadership. He invests his time encouraging leaders around the world.