Imagine you are standing in Battery Park, on the southernmost tip of Manhattan, and gathered around you are 4,000 people from 40 countries. Your job is to lead this diverse group of people on a cross-country trip by foot over the next five years—from New York to Santa Monica on the Pacific’s shore, a distance of 2,500 miles by the most direct route.
A solitary walker, putting in about ten hours a day, could make it from New York to Los Angeles in about 90 days. However, you have been given five years (the tenure of a typical CEO) to reach Santa Monica, which means your team of 4,000 people will walk about an hour every day for the next half decade. Sound obscure? Well, not so much.
This is the essence of leadership: emotionally and sometimes literally transporting people on a journey from one place to another, and inspiring them to believe in what they can achieve—that they can, indeed, reach a faraway destination.
To lead others on any journey, you will utilize the “left brain” technical tools, but they, alone, are not enough. You must be capable of using your “right brain” to inspire and empower so that they can achieve even more than they thought possible.
In The Leadership Journey, best-selling author and Korn Ferry CEO Gary Burnison addresses four crucial aspects of leadership for leading yourself—and others—on a transformative journey of a lifetime.