I don’t know where this quote comes from, but I have always seen it as a source of reflection on leadership. It describes the leadership journey in which true understanding is emergent, even for the leader who thought he understood himself very well in the fist place.
It tells us that leadership is social, a praxis, something that one learns, something one becomes. Becoming a leader is a better term than being a leader. We are always becoming and, in that journey, sometimes we have to tell ‘them’ three times so that we understand, finally.
I worry about the kind of leadership that has all the answers, that has ‘arrived at the destination’ as if there was an organizational Sat Nav, a Leadership Tom Tom, or Garmin, or Google map, that takes you exactly to a GPS destination point.
Leadership is not real leadership without an invitation. The invitation is to others to navigate and find better ways, better success, better lands. But it requires this human, humble element of ‘understanding together’.
Perhaps at the third time!