Published: 27th September 2021
When to lead and when to step down: What is the correct time to ‘phase’ up?
Have you lost that fire in your belly to lead? The Coach says there’s no shame in stepping down, now that King Kohli is slowly loosening the reins
Politicians need to take a page out of Virat Kohli’s book — Kohli announced that he’s stepping down as the captain of the RCB after the 2021 IPL. It isn’t an easy task for someone to give up their captaincy,
especially for someone like Kohli who’s had an amazing track record. But it’s a commendable move as it’s the sign of a leader to know when to step down gracefully. Most people perceive stepping down from a leadership position as a sign of failure, it is the opposite. If people continue without stepping down when the time comes — they’re doomed. It leads to catastrophic outcomes as this doesn’t just lead to that one person to fail, but will script chaos for everyone else in the team.
Three Important Points to Remember Always
1. ‘If I can’t do it, nobody can’ is the attitude that made many great leaders vanish without a trace. The
belief that they are irreplaceable or that nobody can fill their shoes is what led to them losing sight of the issues that were brewing right under their nose. The same followers who put them in that position ultimately became disgruntled and became the cause for them to be overthrown.
2. It’s always better to step down in advance rather than wait till the last minute as it’ll make matters worse. When you feel that you’re not doing justice to your position, that’s the right time to make way for fresh blood to take over.
3. One of the biggest blunders made by tainted leaders was to do everything that they could, to stick to their position. This obsession made others around them become increasingly resentful. Being forced to step down is an embarrassing incident, not gracious.
Is there really a ‘right time’ to step down?
Before we go there, one thing we need to realise is that we need to be a hundred per cent truthful to ourselves. This is the most important trait of being a leader — to be able to take rational decisions. Irrespective of the reason, when it is evident that you’re losing focus, then it’s the right time to take a step back and make way for the one who is able to lead the team.
Stress is common amongst most of us, but our methods to cope with stress differs. If you’re feeling too stressed at the thought of work, then it is time to take a step back. Watch out for the sure shot signs of stress like body aches, trouble sleeping, higher blood pressure. Another indicator of stress that most people miss out on is the clenching of fists or grinding of teeth during their sleep.
We talk about upskilling as a key to staying in the race, but there’s a limit to everything. There comes a time when the results aren’t improving in spite of our best efforts. That’s when we need to analyse if our skills aren’t relevant anymore or if we’re finding it hard to cope up with the present generation.
When you lose your passion, everything else dies with it and it becomes a mundane, monotonous and compelled activity — that’s the sign that you need to take a step down. This is what made me take a step back from well paying clinical sessions and shift to training. But that doesn’t mean I failed as a therapist, I’m making a difference here.