This weekend, as part of a backyard improvement project, my husband Eric, his brother, and his dad, moved 36 cubic yards of dirt from our driveway in wheelbarrows. It took two trips for the delivery truck to get all the dirt to our home and most of two days for the three Robinson men to move the dirt mountain.

The enormous pile of dirt was large enough for our kids to climb up, slide down, and dig around in for hours. Moving it required the coordinated effort of one man shoveling and two others pushing the wheelbarrows around the side of our house to the back, one wheelbarrow full at a time.

As of Sunday night, there was a fine layer of dirt across our sloping driveway but the dirt mountain had disappeared.

My husband and his crew spent hours to get the job done.

The results of a weekend’s work: obvious, easy to measure. A mountain moved.

Was my husband leading when he enlisted the help of his family to move two loads of dirt? Or was he just working really hard?

Is leadership something special? Can every day acts be considered leadership? If not, what sets leadership results apart from every day results?

Leaders achieve results. But, is the converse true? Is someone who achieves results a leader?

Leadership or hard work?

Leading others to produce results is hard work.

In the workplace, if  you moved a mountain (figuratively), you would certainly be seen as a leader.

Sometimes, working toward goals can become monotonous.  We may feel like our efforts are having little effect. We may move load after load of dirt and still see a formidable hill. We may want to give up.

To accomplish results, leaders must coordinate the efforts of their team, stay focused on their goals, and persevere until their work is finished.

When the work is done – a project completed, a milestone reached – the results of leadership are evident.

Join the conversation!

Is anyone who achieves results a leader?

Is it possible to be a leader without achieving results?

This was originally posted at Mountain State University LeaderTalk and is reposted with permission.