Be a leader even if you are the only one in the team.

I never finished my story about waltzing around the service station with my brother’s motorbike.

So I get back home and don’t say anything to anyone.

The next day, Sunday, I have to return to the academy. My mum has ironed my police shirts (as mums did then) and I hang them in the back seat of my car to make the journey back to Brisbane. To make it back though, I have to refuel, at the only petrol station in town open on the weekends. I pull into the servo and fill up my car at the same servo where I had competed in strictly ballroom with my robot partner 24 hours earlier. I pay the cashier. He notices the police shirts hanging in the back of my car. ‘Are you a copper’, he says? ‘In training’, I say. He says, ‘Mate, you should’ve been here yesterday. This little shit, who thought he owned the place, turned up on his bike…’

Goals never acted on are just dreams, so act on those dreams. You need to have a goal so in this instance, your first goal in leading is to say that you are going to commit to lead. Even if you don’t know how you are going to do it, if you are worried or afraid about where to start,  just commit to the decision, demonstrate courage and you are halfway there.

Nelson Mandela, in his own inimitable way, said it best. Courage is not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave are not those who do not feel afraid, but those who conquer that fear. Although, I certainly don’t recommend taking people out on nature strips on the way. My story was only a metaphor!

Ever since I had that fateful chat with my parents in 1983, I have been committed to informing, inspiring and remaining true to myself and the people that have sought to follow me for themselves.

Being a leader is not all about changing the world. Being a leader is about changing your understanding of leading. If you can understand how powerful you, as an agent of change can be in this world,  what you are capable of, how much you can change someone’s view of the world (including your own), you can lead!

Commit. Make the choice to lead. Inspire. Provide your vision and communicate it. And Be True. Be true to yourself. Lead yourself and others will follow.

Be a leader. Even if,  you,  are the only one in the team.


Shane Mallory

Shane is a performer, emcee, host, communicator, creative, mentor and innovative theatre director. He lives in Ipswich, Queensland with his wife Natalie, who are almost 'empty nesters' providing a home for their two daughters' dog and two cats.

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