Leadership and Opportunism

president reagan

The Specific Differences

Today let’s consider the difference between LEADERSHIP and OPPORTUNISM.

Leadership is influencing the actions and thoughts of an individual or a group to raise overall performance and to meet or exceed expectations, in order to achieve the vision and goals of the leader.

Leaders are performance driven!

There are many styles and types of leadership, but most successful leaders achieve success by “uplifting” those they lead through a friendly and kind affect, empathy, and by being a living example.

Leaders lead by setting a culture within the organization so all are clear what the company “stands for.”

Leaders plan and implement a set of unwavering and equally applied standards to support and enforce the culture. Core to the culture are the qualities of INTEGRITY, HONESTY, and EMPATHY.

Simply put, INTEGRITY can be defined as doing the right thing when no one is watching. It is living by a set of standards that do not and will not change, It is a core value. 

HONESTY is the bedrock on which relationships are built. Tell the truth all the time to all, period. It’s that simple. Another core value. 

EMPATHY is the quality defined by the phrase: no one CARES how much you know….until they know how much you CARE. 

A shining example of LEADERSHIP is President Ronald Reagan. When he took office the country was at a low ebb.

Through his “friendly and folksy” style, speech, and attitude he uplifted our nation at a time when our national morale was low.

He inspired and motivated our country out of our collective malaise, and through deliberate negotiations he engineered the Soviet Union to tear down the Berlin Wall separating what was then East and West Germany.

His vision of our country as a “shining city on a hill” still resonates with many as the America of our dreams.

Leadership has no bounds, is performance and results driven. If administered properly it can uplift all. 

Now let’s contrast that with OPPORTUNISM.

OPPORTUNISM is taking personal advantage of a situation without regard to the vision, goals, or culture of an individual, group, or organization.

Although in the end the actions taken may result in personal and/or group success, usually those involved are satisfying a particular personal need that may, by circumstance coincide with the goals of an organization.

Just look around. In today’s world, there are so many examples of OPPORTUNISM, I am sure you will readily be able to tell the difference. 

Leadership is a series of choices.

Leadership has no bounds and is performance and results driven.

Life is a series of choices. Leadership or opportunism?

The choice is yours. Leaders always….always choose to take the high road and do the right thing!