A Leadership Trap

by Midnight Freemason Contributor
RWB Michael H. Shirley

”You cannot push anyone up the ladder unless he is willing to climb.” –Andrew Carnegie 

One of the traps of leadership is our desire to see people succeed. It is an essential characteristic in a leader, but a leader cannot create that desire in others. Success requires work, and work requires the desire to work, translated into action. Leadership is influence, not doing another’s work because we want that person to succeed. We cannot force action on our fellow Masons. We can only do what we can do, enthusiastically, offer opportunities, praise when praise is due, and act fraternally. In all things, we must lead by example. 


R.W.B. Michael H. Shirley serves the Grand Lodge of Illinois, A.F. & A.M, as Leadership Development Chairman and Assistant Area Deputy Grand Master of the Eastern Area. A Certified Lodge Instructor, he is a Past Master and Life Member of Tuscola Lodge No. 332 and a plural member of Island City Lodge No. 330, F & AM, in Minocqua, Wisconsin. He is Past Most Wise Master of the George E. Burow Chapter of Rose Croix in the Valley of Danville, IL; he is also a member of the Illinois Lodge of Research, the York Rite, Eastern Illinois Council No. 356 Allied Masonic Degrees, Eastern Star, Illini High Twelve, and the Tall Cedars of Lebanon.The author of several article on British and American history, he teaches at Eastern Illinois University.You can contact him at: m.h.shirley@gmail.com

1 comment:

  1. Wanting someone to succeed is not a trap, it is a goal. Mentoring a brother/brothers in stated meeting management, program development and accountability may teach them the skills they need to succeed, without taking over the East. This is especially true when younger brothers are thrust into leadership roles early in their fraternal lives.
    The danger is thinking it is easier just to do it ourselves, instead of expending the extra time to 'take a little of the edge of the ashlar'.

    If the effort is not made, no matter what the perception of capability, then we have failed to improve our lodges, and ourselves, through our in-action.


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