If You Don’t Have The Water Bottle, You Are Not Leading


I was once a Peace Keeper under the United Nations Peace Keeping Mission in Timor Leste.

And there are many times we must trek through mountainous terrain to detect suspicious activities.

This time, we stopped for a rest, and we passed a water bottle around, and it reached our commander first.

But no, we did not pass to him because he is the “boss’, we passed to him because he earned the right to the bottle.

And the bottle says a lot about his leadership.

When you earn your bottle in your workplace, it means you have led well.

Having seen enough of the various leadership styles in the corporate world, here is my take on three different kinds of leaders.


1. Leaders who expect the bottle

These leaders expect or demand trust without knowing they have to earn it.

Those who expect the bottle upfront usually get the bottle, but without the water.

It’s an empty bottle, which signifies empty trust.

Empty trust is simply lip service.


2. Leaders who lost the bottle

They give the impression that they “got” the bottle, but people around them know they didn’t.

They forgot that the day they take on a leadership role is to lead the people to the promised land, not the people leading them to the promised place.

This is what I call self-delusion, which gave birth to false entitlement.

The conclusion, they will never get the bottle.


3. Leaders with the bottle.

Leaders with the bottle passed to them understand the significance of this action.

It is not just a sign of camaraderie but a sign of trust.

And mind you, we must ration our water over the five days and nights, so every drop is precious.

Therefore, passing the water bottle to him means we have less to spare.

But we do it anyway because we are willing so that he can lead us further.

At the same time, a great leader is willing to give up their water bottle when they see a member’s bottle dried up.

Leaders with the bottle have followers willing to sacrifice themselves for a greater cause.

Start embracing the Water Bottle Leadership.


This is JOSEPH@RISEUP Signing Off.

May You TRANSFORM, FLOURISH AND PROSPER in the brand new world!

#riseup #riseupglobal #showup #humanleadership #motivation #inspiration #peacekeeping #leadership