I don’t really do politics.

Apart from I do…or at least I have.

Many years ago I worked in local government, and so part of that job was updating and to some extent appeasing local politicians.

I worked on the London 2012 games, helping prepare local authorities and local communities for the Olympics and Paralympics coming to town…I then ended up working in central government supporting politicians to make sure they were kept informed of 2012 related developments…everything from bin collections and emergency planning, to cultural programming and grass roots sport.

And then there were Wednesdays.

Wednesday mornings were the regular press events at City Hall, first with Ken Livingstone and then with the main man himself BORIS….they were entertaining I’ll give them that.

Now please note this is not a political post, this is not about my views on any of the individuals…just an observation on leadership.

Looking back I could see he had his eyes on the Prime Minister role even then…he was one of the most determined politicians I’d ever met…and he didn’t give a rats arse what anyone thought of him.

Boris did Boris.

He was on a mission to lead….even if he couldn’t wave a bloody flag properly, or sort out his mop at an opening ceremony with around 10 million viewers worldwide.

Look my point is whether you like it or not some people are born leaders, some people take on leadership roles due to things happening in their lives, some get a leg up because of the families they are born into and some have no interest in leading at all.

And it’s not just in politics we see this

When the lockdown happened I found it fascinating seeing how the online world reacted.

How fast people pivoted.

Who slagged off who.

Who froze.

Who started posting conspiracy theory shit (yep they are not on my feed anymore)

And how many folks were business as usual.

There is no right or wrong. As a leader you do you. Thats the point, and then it’s up to your people to decide whether to follow you and your direction of travel or not.

There have been people who have impressed me, people who have annoyed me, and people I even forgot I followed to be fair.

I am known as a business coach for the work I do to help people grow Tribes…but what people don;t realise is actually what I teach people is how to step up as a leader.

Leaders need to be leading us somewhere worth going, teaching us stuff stuff worth knowing

That was one of the lines from the viral film I made this time last year about the frustrations I felt as a business owner.

You can watch it here.

People often want a Tribe and all the benefits that come with it, kudos, success, support, people who like them and tell them that frequently (seriously), but they don’t always want the stuff that comes with it, the graft, the need to innovate, the need to hold tight to your values, ethics and boundaries…oh and the small matter of the haters.

Oh you will get haters.

Not because you are a horrid person and people won’t like you, but because you will trigger people for all kinds of reasons. In some cases they can’t even put their finger on it…they just won’t like you.

Being liked is not the goal anyway…so its all good.

But what kind of tribe are you looking to build?

Business leadership online comes in many forms, as does tribe building..here are a few of those I see in my work with clients,

Thought Leadership – Real unique thinking and the development of frameworks and concepts that others can adopt. And the building of an audience of followers, fans, advocates and maybe even consumers.

Mission-Based Leadership – Gathering en masse your allies, advocates and activists with the goal of changing the world in some way…which may or may not be monetised.

Programme Based Leadership – This is where you build community around a programme or experience. It may be temporary, or over the short to medium term. You are solving a current issue for a heap of people, and they may or may not move on quite quickly once they have what they need.

Personality Led Leadership – Where people gather around you, because they like what you stand for and in many ways want to emulate you and what you have achieved.

And then of course theres

Self Leadership – Navigating through your own lived experience in the best way possible. You may build a tribe of supporters around you, and you may well even monetise it in some way….but the focus is always on self-actualisation.

I see all of these on my client list, and I love that diversity.

So where do you fit into this…who do you want to be, what kind of tribe do you want to grow around you?

Let’s talk? I bet I could support you in some way.

I have a number of programmes coming up in the next few weeks that might help you with this.

Just dipping your toe into all of this? Or looking to activate and monetise your tribe. On Monday I start a new round of One to Many, my 8 week programme for experts to take their genius to the masses via a group programme.

Here is the link

and in June I will be opening my doors to Tribe Builder 0.2 my signature programme….so watch this space.

Julie Creffield is a community engagement specialist and business mentor with more than 20 years experience. She lives in East London with her 7 year old who shes currently home schooling, and a ginger kitten called Tom.

She is on a mission to help 1000 small business owners create movements that matter, movements that go onto impact on millions of lives while helping those leaders reach their full potential and change the trajectory of their families lives.

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