Have you ever been on the interstate and seen steam rollers going as slow as possible to flatten the interstate? It got me frustrated because traffic is so backed up because the interstate only has one or two lanes open. It is all because of this big machine going so slow to flatten a drivable surface. As I got out of the construction area, I started to think that I’m thankful for that slow machine because it made the surface flat that I’m driving on. This is a lot like leadership.
Leadership is a process that never ends. As leaders we are always learning new lessons and traveling over different surfaces at a slow pace. I just picture myself driving a steam roller as all these cars are passing me and I’m just focused on my path that is set before me. As leaders it is easy to try to speed up as others are passing us but other people’s courses are different from ours. We get into trouble when we try to speed up our course. The consequence is that we start getting off course and sometimes have to go back and fix those missed spots. The best leadership is slow leadership.
This is what I mean by that last sentence; it is better staying in a place under great leadership rather than stepping out too quickly. Could you imagine what would happen if a steam roller started to get off course and go onto another course? I’m pretty sure it would be a mess. Leadership can get messy if we try stepping out too quickly. I’m learning in my life that going slow and learning more is better than going fast and learning less. Once opportunities start arising, you will be more prepared on a slow path where you had time to develop instead of a fast pace course where you had to learn by turning around. Yes, leadership can be fast pace but your experiences on the slow pace track should help you control the fast pace leadership.
Next time you get frustrated with the process of leadership, remember that you are developing into the leader God has called you to be. Don’t speed up the process! Learn everything you can in the slow pace environment. Don’t worry about the people passing you, just stay on your course. Sometimes you will pass people that passed you because you slowed down and developed as a leader.