There was a farmer who grew excellent quality corn. Every year he won the award for the best grown corn. He was a leader in his own right.
One year a newspaper reporter interviewed him and learned something interesting about how he grew it. What the reporter discovered was that the farmer shared his seed corn with his neighbors.
“How can you afford to share your best seed corn with your neighbors when they are entering corn in competition with yours each year?” the reporter asked.
“Why sir,” said the farmer, “Didn’t you know? The wind picks up pollen from the ripening corn and swirls it from field to field. If my neighbors grow inferior corn, cross-pollination will steadily degrade the quality of my corn. If I am to grow good corn, I must help my neighbors grow good corn.”
Here are three lessons we can draw from this farmer.
1. Power of the collective
No general ever won a war alone. Even the most qualified surgeon needs an anesthesiologist, theater technicians and hospital staff for their patients. In other words, outstanding and excellence rest on the power of the collective.
A vision is critical. To outlive that vision, a team is a must have. For you to grow, help others. It will astound you how far you can go walk with others by your side.
2. Principle of success
Perhaps, success in leadership is one of the most misconstrued concepts. In a culture obsessed with metrics, it has become about who has the most followers… or likes… or…
This farmer reminds us of a very important leadership principle: connection. He did not hold success as something he owned. He shared it with others. If he was to succeed at his passion, he had to support others succeed at theirs too.
It is when leaders grow other leaders that their impact is amplified.
3. Preservation of life
The farmer choosing to share the best seed is because he cared about his legacy. He chose to accept his life reflected in others. In doing so, his community was lifted up. To preserve is to keep alive or in existence.
Real preservation does not come from holding back. It comes from paying forward. We grow our lives by giving some of it away. The value of a life is measured by the lives it touches. One for all, and all for one!
This is what legacy of leaders is made of.
The effective leaders I have met, worked with, and observed behaved in much the same way… They made sure that the person they saw in the mirror in the morning was the kind of person they wanted to be, respect, and believe in. They fortified themselves against the leader’s greatest temptations – to do things that are popular rather than right, and to do petty, mean and sleazy things.” ~ Peter Drucker
Q: How have you included others in your path to growth? Have your say by clicking here.