4 Reasons Generational Leaders Have So Many Haters

1. Generational Leaders are Agitators

Generational leaders are agitators. If there is an important issue that needs to be addressed, a generational leader brings it up and keeps bringing it up until you have no choice but to listen. You may not like that this leader is attempting to upset the balance, or imbalance, or power that has been in place for years. Every time you try to ignore them, this agitating leader finds a way to keep shedding light on issues that you wish to keep in the dark. You just want the generational leader to shut up and just accept how things are. You’re all for making things better, but not if someone else may advance. You think change can be good, as long as it doesn’t threaten your current situation, and may force you to have to change with it.

2. Generational Leaders Make People Uncomfortable

A generational leader makes you uncomfortable. People fear what they don’t understand, especially when they refuse to take the necessary steps to get a true understanding. Generational leaders force dialogue about very sensitive issues that you may have been trying to convince yourself don’t exist. It makes you uncomfortable because deep down you have buried your feelings for so long that you have become blind to the truth in exchange for your reality.

Generational leaders remind you of how the present remains a product of the past. That the residuals of history are woven in the fabric of every culture. They make it more difficult for you to avoid looking yourself in the mirror and finally facing your true character and integrity. That’s a very uncomfortable feeling. You don’t like feeling like you aren’t the quality of person that you perceive yourself as. Anything that makes you feel contrary must be denied at all cost.

3. Generational Leaders Don't Always Plan

Many times, generational leaders don’t have a clear plan from start to finish. Generational leadership is all about innovation. Innovations mean doing something that has never been done before or done on a certain level. The thing about innovations is that you don’t usually have case studies to compare them to, therefore much of their process is trial and error.

All the generational leader is sure of is their vision of the potential outcome, the definiteness that this issue must be addressed, and that they have a responsibility and a purpose to be the catalyst brings about this change. A generational leader doesn’t always know exactly what needs to be done, only that something needs to be done.

Without a clear plan and assurance, many people are fearful that the initiative won’t be successful. Some are also afraid of the repercussions they may come along with being involved, so they whisper behind closed doors. They lack the courage to get involved in fear of loss, ruined reputation, and criticism. Every generational leader that has ever ushered great change at one point was the most hated, criticized, targeted, and persecuted people in history. Today, those same generational leaders are revered as some of the most influential people of our time.

4. Generational Leaders Are Considered Controversial

The generational leader that is compelled to step outside of the “status quo” is widely considered controversial. They choose not to adapt to “norms”, they choose to question the “establishment”, and they choose not to settle for what’s handed, but rather fair and just. You may say that you understand the purpose of the generational leader’s plight, but you refuse to acknowledge the motivation behind the leader’s actions. Even those that question the methods of the leader offer absolutely no viable alternative that will effectively address the true leader’s concerns.

You tell the generational leader to just accept the current circumstances as if to say “you should just be satisfied with where you are, what you have, and leave it at that.” You then label the generational leaders as “trouble makers”, angry, and argumentative. Some attempt to deploy divisive tactics to anyone who may benefit, or be sympathetic, to the change that the generational leader is attempting to bring about. If previous tactics aren’t successful at diminishing the influence of the generationl leader, there may be an attempt to assassinate their character to be a distraction from their true cause.

How you can begin to appreciate the importance of a Generational Leader

There is a major difference between someone who is in a position of leadership and a generational leader. A generational leader doesn’t just “manage” or “supervise,” the generational leader has a vested interest in the betterment and empowerment of the whole. Their motives are not self-serving. The generational leader feels a moral obligation to speak for the unheard. They feel a responsibility to fight for injustice in any form.

The generational leader speaks to the truth, rather than what’s correct. What’s right, rather than what’s popular. Rather than condemning the generational leader of their approach, seek to understand the importance of the changes they are fighting for, and the lives of people that are being affected by the issues being addressed.

To truly begin to get this understanding, you must actively seek the problems at their core. Not just for a day, but life. Learn to understand the lives that are being affected daily. Appreciate the courage that it takes for a generational leader to take the journey for what is just. That’s a lonely journey. You will probably never understand the sacrifices that a generational leader makes in the name of their cause. Most of the generational leaders in history weren’t truly appreciated until after they were gone. Many times, their plight, and their fight still lives on.

You may never agree with the generational leader’s cause, methods, or opinions, but there is one way to understand it at its core. Find out what the generational leader is standing for.

What are they fighting for? What are they trying to improve or change? 

Once you truly understand the what, find out why. Why is their cause so important?

Why do they feel the need to speak up? Why now?

Lastly, find out whose lives are being affected most if this change doesn’t come about. How have these people’s lives been affected thus far? What will happen to these people if a change isn’t made?

Truly imagine their pain, their struggles, their obstacles, and their daily life experiences. Do whatever you can to see it on a basic human emotional level. That may require you to step outside of your comfort zone and your personal life experience bubble. 

Read books about personal accounts and stories of the people being impacted. Listen to a podcast that promotes honest conversation around subjects that are important to that demographic. Anything that you can do to expose yourself to different perspectives that may challenge your own.

Did you get that picture? Now, as you think about all those things that those people have gone through, going through, and experienced – I want you to take those exact experiences, close your eyes, and imagine those things happening to you, your family, and your friends…

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