Are You the Governor?
By: David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer

Perhaps a better title would have been; You Are the Governor. Please allow me to explain.

It started this past Friday when I had an amazing session with one of my coaching clients. He was explaining all the great things that he was doing and how his team was responding. He even went on to say that a senior leader at his company recently said something like, “it’s like you are growing your wings and beginning to fly.” I was so happy for him, and then he made this comment, “an organization cannot excel beyond the inspiration of the leader.” What a profound statement. (I did ask him permission to use this.)

So back to the governor question.

According to Webster, a governor is an attachment to a machine (as a gasoline engine) for automatic control or limitation of speed. I remember first hearing this definition from my Dad from time to time as we would work on small engines like lawn mowers or snow blowers. A governor is put on the engine so that it cannot run too fast and ruin the engine. The device governs the revolutions per minute of the engine.

My friend recognized that leaders do the very same things. The success of any organization is directly controlled by the leader’s ability to inspire. Are we as leaders holding our organization back, or are we the inspiration to strive for excellence? In his book The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John Maxwell describes this in the first law, The Law of the Lid, which states that a team cannot develop beyond the ability of their leader.

So Governor, are you holding your team back? You don’t need to. If you are committed to growth, you can learn how to become the inspirational leader your organization deserves.