What it Means to be a Leader

“The true mark of a leader is the willingness to stick with a bold course of action — an unconventional business strategy, a unique product-development roadmap, a controversial marketing campaign — even as the rest of the world wonders why you're not marching in step with the status quo. In other words, real leaders are happy to zig while others zag. They understand that in an era of hyper-competition and non-stop disruption, the only way to stand out from the crowd is to stand for something special." -Bill Taylor, "Do You Pass the Leadership Test?"

Being a leader is an ongoing process of learning and unlearning, teaching and being taught, failing and succeeding. There are many different ways to be both a leader and to lead, it is important to familiarize yourself with your distinct leadership style so that you’re able to best provide direction, implement change, motivate, and communicate with others.

Here are some resources we suggest in order to help you discover your leadership style, create sustainable models of leadership, and make connections.


Determine your leadership style

[Take the Quiz!]


Creating sustainable leadership

Start by writing out your Purpose, Why, and What

  1. What is the purpose of your group?
    1. Who do you want to raise money for?
    2. Why raise money for this particular cause?
    3. What impact do you want to have on this/these communities, causes, and/or organizations?
  2. Why is this cause important?
    1. Why should others care about this?
    2. Why should people donate to this cause?
  3. What impact do you want your group to have?
    1. What groups or causes do you want to focus on, if you have a focus?
    2. What will this look like a year from now?


Making connections

After determining your own purpose, why, and what, find out your groups. It’s important for you as a leader to facilitate community building by creating an environment that encourages self-awareness, collaboration, and collective action. We encourage you as a leader to create a collective vision. Ask your group members to define what they believe to be the group's purpose, mission, and goal.

Tip: do this at least once to twice a year by planning a group retreat where you all share your ideas, visions, and hopes for the future of your group and the impact you can make on the causes you care about! Need help planning a retreat? Reach out to us at community@grapevine.org.

Check out our blog post on the type of group circle leader you could be:

[Blog Post]