Every leader must know that the key to success lies is their ability to work with other people. The landscape where leaders perform their roles have individuals with diverse opinions, different disciplines, beliefs and culture. A leader must not choose the people they will work with based on their race, personal idiosyncrasies or defined attributes. The most important character a leader should look out for in their team members is collaboration and team spirit – the agreeableness of individual member to other people and the willingness to undertake the journey with them while pursuing the target.

The first assignment a leader must carry out when they are given a task is to identify the key people who will make them succeed or fail in their endeavor. Any man who will make you succeed is as important as those who can make you fail. Don’t ignore either.  It is unwise for a leader to make friends with individuals who can make them succeed and ignore or fight those who can make them fail. A leader wins difficult battles by forming alliance and coalition with those they love or who loves them and those who hate and fight them.

Leadership success will be facilitated when there is coalition and alignment of the goals and objectives. In the office, team setting or the wider society, a leader must identify the vocal and opiniated members and build alliance with them instead of staging a fight. For a leader, a fight is a great distraction when nothing is at stake. No matter the lines of differences existing between two individuals or an individual and a group, there can be a meeting point. That meeting point must be identified, cultivated and made to flourish.

It does not matter whether there will be trade-off or compromises at some point, but the overall objective and the vision of the organization or team must have superordinate preeminence. A leader is a bridge builder. Build bridges to your friends and foes alike. Build bridges across terrains to those who like you and those who don’t. An enemy today may be your greatest ally tomorrow. Only a bridge between you and them can make that dream come true.

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