Why you need to create new leaders, not followers

True Leaders

Some people say that in order to have leaders you must also have followers. But the attitude of The Churning is that true leaders don’t create followers: they create more leaders.

Followers are dependent — they need to be told what to do. Creating followers creates more workload for the leader. It creates dependency, stagnation, and leads to issues with succession and contraction as the capacity of the organisation to change becomes restricted to that one leader. The leader becomes a bottleneck.

Leaders who create more leaders increase the capacity of the organisation to flex and to grow. They increase its resilience and agility. The issue now becomes one of coordination between the different parts… But if the new leaders are true leaders (who also create more leaders) then this issue is straightforward to deal with (especially compared with the alternative, which is stagnation).

Leaders who create more leaders expand and enhance their ability to influence at a distance. They expand their own capacity as leaders and the results they are able to achieve.

Screen Shot 2015-05-11 at 20.08.44When times are stable, creating followers makes sense. Everyone can align behind the leader’s single goal.

But in a time of churning and change the ability to flex and adapt is paramount. To survive, the organisation’s ability to adapt must be greater than rate of change in the market.

And that means the more leaders the better.


The Churning shows a number of ways to create self-directed leaders.

First, in inner leadership, it helps you understand yourself. It provides tools that enable you to identify what you care about most. It shows you how to uncover the opportunities in any situation, and turn the one that matches you best into an inspiring vision.

Understanding yourself in this way allows you to understand others. And it enables you to lead them through the same journey. Once they have become clear on their own deep priorities, then you can trust them to do what the organisation needs: because in building the organisation they will be building themselves, achieving their own purpose and vision by building the organisation.

Finally, outer leadership shows you how to run your organisation as a living organism. And a living organism, as we know, is an organisation made up of mutually-dependent parts, working together independently, yet in harmony. Coordinated, but not micro-managed, by a unifying leader.

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