“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.” John Wayne
There are many traits we add to our leadership list to help us on our lean journey and courage is one of them. It takes courage to turn plans into action. It takes courage to experiment. It takes courage to try something new by removing the warm blanket of comfort that the status quo provides.
It takes courage to admit we don’t know everything, say we made a mistake and make problems visible.
It takes courage to speak up and voice our ideas or thoughts especially if they do not align with the thinking of others.
It takes courage to make decisions and do what is right.
It takes courage to keep trying, get up when we fall down and try again.
It takes courage to stand firm with our principles and values when pressured act against them.
From my all-time favorite movie “Braveheart” with outstanding soundtrack, Sir William Wallace (Mel Gibson) states “Men don’t follow titles, they follow courage.” A title of President, VP or Plant Manager does not make us a leader, only our words and actions grant us that privilege. More importantly, it is not just our prepared speeches or written memos that reveal our courage in leadership, it is in our daily actions and simple comments. It is the little things we say and do every day where our courage can be seen.
Without courage, we cannot improve.