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Leadership: Handout or Hand Up?

As leaders do we see ourselves as coaches, mentors and teachers or as managers, bosses and the person “in-charge.” The distinction may be subtle but the influence you may have on people and the results you drive may not be subtle. In the book, “Leaders East Last,” (title derived from the Marine Corps where enlisted men always eat first), Simon Sinek says, “whether a leader puts themselves or their people first, determines if they are worthy of our love and loyalty. Leadership is a decision not a rank.”

Many people think that the ‘younger generation’ is lazy and entitled. I say every generation has this type of person. I see so many 20-30 somethings doing such great things; I hope you see them that way too. I loved this article, “Meet 6 Entrepreneurs Who Use Tech to Change the World.” Each young entrepreneur is doing something simple to solve a problem. My favorite is HandUp started by a young woman named Rose Broome.

“HandUp is direct giving for homeless people and others in need in your neighborhood. Your donations are redeemed for basic needs like food, clothing, and medical care through our partner organization Project Homeless Connect.”

Like all start ups, this one will have critics and bumps along the way. What I like is that Rose didn’t just give the homeless woman a dollar and forget her. She’s looking for a way to help stabilize her situation. It may be a handout right now, but hopefully a hand up is on it way too.

Photo credit: photo leroys

1 Response
  • Carl Hoffman
    March 25, 2014

    As usual your blog rang my bell. The problem of people in need has burdened me off and on for over 40 years. I had to deal with it directly from 1973 to 1980 and again from 2006-2013. Now that I am retired I am a member of a church that does a spectacular job in this ministry. We provide living quarters, training, medical, and mental health assistance for people, especially women. I raised money for this ministry to get started back in 2003. It started with a group of concerned women praying.

    This is a complicated issue because of the many types of people in need. There are those who are homeless due to abject poverty and others who are homeless because of being an untreated mentally ill person and or having a substance dependency. Not all homeless people are poor. In my last church, most of the ones we helped would have been institutionalized before the early 1980’s. At that time we eliminated or underfunded many social programs. We simply gave them money assistance through SSI then sent them out into society totally unprepared. At my former church these people would come to us after the monthly check was spent. Most of these people are unemployable. Many sell a newspaper written by homeless people for a dollar that they buy tor a dime. However, the richer suburban communities banned them for selling their paper on street corners. Their excuse was safety.

    When I took social work classes in college and seminary they taught us the best thing to do was to enhance the person’s self-esteem. I applaud you for being a champion for millennials and encouraging a leadership style based on service and not privilege.

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