Effective leadership cannot simply be about moving forward. At times, leadership means looking back at the leaders who led you, remembering how they worked, and integrating their approaches into your own.
learning about leadership cannot be limited to the experiences you have right now with the leaders you have right now. As you grow and mature as a leader, you must look back and re-examine those past leaders. Your perspective has grown. Your understanding has grown. And by looking back, you can now see the nuances in their leadership that you could not have seen while under their wing.
“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.” –1 Corinthians 13:11-12, ESV
As we are being led, we cannot know or understand the many layers and sophistications of the leader immediately before us. We can, however, review our past. We were “children” under the leadership of former leaders. We saw them one way, but now, having “grown up” a bit in our own leadership, we can better understand the ways they led.