Ryan McKinney

Associate Director of Campus Activities, The Catholic University of America
Brentwood, MD, United States

About Ryan

Areas of Expertise

Higher Education Administration, Leadership Development, Multicultural education, Student Affairs & Activities, Residence Life

An idea worth spreading

You need a title to be a leader. You just need to broaden your definition of a leadership title. Any relationship has a title associated with it - brother, friend, employee, stranger - are all relationships where you have the potential to influence someone else's thinking, behavior, or development. These are all leadership titles. If you use your leadership training within these relationships, do you think they would get better?

Universities

Kent State University

Comments & conversations

Noface
Ryan McKinney
Posted almost 3 years ago
Titles are essential for leadership
And why don't we all perform the functions of POTUS? Why are we waiting for him to perform them? ....he has the title which indicates that he should be the one to accomplish those functions. But if more of us viewed our title as Citizen differently - maybe we'd exert more influence to ensure the functions are carried out in our best interests. We have the leadership titles but we don't proactively exert the influence those title provide us.
Noface
Ryan McKinney
Posted almost 3 years ago
Titles are essential for leadership
You can give yourself the title but the person, organization, object, etc. on the other side of that title gets to decide how much influence you have in that relationship. You can give yourself the title Empress of All Universes but the universes decide how they respond to your influence.
Noface
Ryan McKinney
Posted almost 3 years ago
Titles are essential for leadership
yes! we need to be developing leadership qualities/skills in everybody because we are all in positions of influence. The more others become aware of the potential influence they have, the more likely they will influence in goal oriented ways.
Noface
Ryan McKinney
Posted almost 3 years ago
Titles are essential for leadership
I do suggest that everyone is a leader. Doesn't mean they are effective as a leader. Doesn't mean they are having a positive influence on others. Doesn't even mean they are aware of the role they have. How you lead is up to you and the influence you have over others is up to those you are leading. You can't change the fact you are a leader - you can change the adjective that goes in front of the word leader.
Noface
Ryan McKinney
Posted almost 3 years ago
Titles are essential for leadership
Being a leader means having influence. When you are in a relationship you influence the other person, organization, object, or concept. Think about any relationship you have - there is a title that comes with that. If you apply leadership concepts to that relationship you will be able to influence that relationship more proactively. Everyone has relationships thus everyone is a leader. This doesn't mean you are good at it - you could have a negative influence on your relationships. Why and how you influence others will lead to a description of your style of leadership (good, effective, negative, servant, destructive, etc.) We don't need to wait to be given grand titles to start leading (o Great One, Empress of All Universes, etc.) - the titles of friend, son, homeowner, citizen are waiting for you to lead. For example in Drew Dudley's Ted talk he shared a story about leadership being influence http://www.ted.com/talks/drew_dudley_everyday_leadership.html. In this story he uses his title as a "Member of Shinaramma", "Student", and "Stranger" to have a significant and lasting impact on the young lady's life. Let's take James Zhang's example of the title "Cool Kid Next Door" - this title describes the relationship you have with someone else (they live next door). They also define you as "cool" and with this description in your title it qualifies how someone might interact with you and views you. You clearly have a relationship with that person which has led them to not only identify you as the kid next door but add the adjective "cool". The title "friend" can be hugely influential and means different functions in different friendships yet still gives a context for that relationship. Add "best" in front of that title and it is a different kind of relationship with different influence. Think of relationship you have and you will find a title. What you do with that title and how others react to how we that title is leadership. It is that simple.