Not every leader in this life has a formal title. Title or not, that shouldn't stop you from being a true leader no matter where you sit in the food chain.

Leadership is about inspiring courage and change, not about titles.

Some of the most successful leaders in my life were leaders without a title. Leaders without responsibility. Leaders without people. Regardless, I would follow them into the heat of any battle.

Here is what I've learned about leading without a title.

1. Be Intelligent.

If you've ever been in a meeting, you'll notice people gravitate to the intelligent.

I'm not talking about the people who say they are smart; or pretend they are smart; or want you to think they are smart because they have a title.

After all the puffery is gone, true intelligence arises. The person with the most wisdom and insight will start commanding, then controlling the room.

Be that person.

2. Be Fearless.

In business, sometimes you have to do hard things. You're often asked to step out of your comfort zone.

Think about a time when your own company needed to push into the unknown. Who did the masses look to?

After the executives had made their speeches, my guess it was on the individual out there giving it a go. Willing to look foolish. Willing to feel stupid. Willing to fail.

People watch those that are fearless (and often copy what the fearless figure out).

Be that person.

3. Have Fervor.

No matter what it is you do, do it with gusto. Have passion.

Remember that co-worker that didn't have an opinion, never rocked the boat, and always agreed with orders from on high?

Neither does anyone else.

Get angry. Get excited. Get frustrated. Get emotional.

Be that person.

4. Always Give.

Above all else, be a genuine giver.

Give thanks to people. Give credit to coworkers. Give praise to peers. Give help to those who aren't expecting it. Be a true friend to the janitor.

When you do, your ability to impact and influence others is greater than if you had the most senior title in the company.

Remember: You can lead from behind. That's because earned leadership is greater than inherited leadership you get from a title.

If you want to be a leader, you now have the keys to do so.

Published on: Jul 14, 2017