A highlight memory in my life was recently watching a pride of lions hunt in Kenya on the Serengeti plains. Here are some leadership points I took away from the experience.
Leaders are hard to find
The pride was carefully concealed in the grass. Although these lions are large creatures, they usually kept their heads beneath the level of the tall grass. You had to look very carefully and get up closer to really notice what was taking place.
Lion Insight: This is true of leaders. You need to get close enough to them to really see their leadership at work.
Identify the target
One of the pride raised her head high above the grass and spotted a single Hartebeest on the horizon more than a kilometer away. Once identified, she never took her eyes off the prey and somehow signaled to the entire pride to do the same.
Lion Insight: Leaders are the ones who can look out to the horizon and determine where the entire group should be headed. They also have a way of communicating this so all eyes are on the goal.
Spread out and gain perspective
With a military like precision, the pride began to spread out across the plain, each one staring intently at the goal. By doing so they were increasing their ability to judge the direction and potential action of the prey. It also positioned them in such a way that no matter what took place, some member of the pride may be in a place to have success. This was a team effort.
Lion Insight: Leaders are always helped by getting more perspective on a situation. Allowing your team to be among your feedback group gives an even greater potential of achieving your goals.
The pride began to move toward their goal slowly, quietly with stealth. They were not in a rush, as they knew that would be futile when they have to cover so much territory to get close to achieving their goal.
Lion Insight: Leaders need to have the discipline to patiently work towards their goals. One step at a time will get you there. If you rush, you may loose entirely.
Ignore the distractions
We were in a four-wheel drive right amidst the pride, in fact they walked around us while hunting without even giving an acknowledgement of our presence.
Lion Insight: There are so many things that can capture a leaders attention, but if we are going to reach the goal we must learn to ignore distractions and keep moving forward.
Outside influences can affect the plan
As the pride were moving towards the Hartebeest another Land Cruiser came across the plain towards the lions so that their customers could catch a glimpse of one of the Big Five. In doing so, he attracted the attention of the Hartebeest who then quickly took off in the opposite direction foiling the hunt.
Lion Insight: There will always be the outside influences that can impact your plans. Leaders need to realize this and get over it quickly.
Be quick to regroup
As soon as the pride realized their dinner was now far from a reality they quickly moved back together and began the task of identifying a new target
Lion Insight: Leaders should be quick to call the team together again when there is a need to regroup and set a new goal.
We have an example
There is another lion from whom we can glean leadership principles. Revelation 5:5 refers the Lion of Judah, one of the names ascribed to Jesus.
Lion Insight: Following the Lion of Judah can be a guide for life providing leadership insight and life in all its fullness.
PS – I might add one more to this list and that is that it was the women doing all the work!