You Are Their Guide. They Are Your Heroes.

I want to discuss a concept, not just straight out of the movies, but deeply rooted in supervisor roles. It's about how to better understand your role in the grand narrative of your team.


a smiling supervisor guides his team


Donald Miller writes about this in his book, Building A Storybrand.  Miller follows Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey in which Campbell suggests that a central character, the hero, leans on a guide for advice and wisdom. Here are a few classic movie examples. Luke Skywalker had Obi Wan Kenobi. Kevin Costner’s Elliot Ness character in The Untouchables had Sean Connery’s Jimmy Malone as his guide. The Karate Kid, Daniel LaRusso, had Mr. Miyagi as his guide.

Many of the classic films and stories have a hero, and a guide, who helps the hero overcome difficulty. The guide challenges the hero and offers advice and encouragement in the pursuit of the hero’s goal. 


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The Heroine's Journey is About Teamwork

Gail Carriger's The Heroine's Journey flips the script from the usual "Hero's Journey" we often hear about. The hero's story is all about solo action and individual feats of strength. But the heroine's journey is about teamwork and delegation. It's about bringing people together, leveraging their strengths, and achieving goals collectively. It's not about celebrating individual victory but finding success through compromise and unity. The heroine isn't afraid to ask for help, knows when to delegate, and collaborates to achieve mutual gain.

This is more closely aligned with what real-world supervisors are supposed to do. The supervisor brings the team together to operate from a place of group strength rather than individual achievement. The supervisor is the guide and collaborator. The individual members of the team are the heroes who work together compensating for each other’s weaknesses and leaning on everyone’s strengths for the good of the team.



Guide Them to the Top

Think about it like climbing Mount Everest. No one scales that mountain alone; it's always a team effort. And as the climbers stand victorious at the summit, there's the guide off to the side—a silent hero who made it all possible.

Remember, your people will one day reflect on you as their best teacher, mentor, and guide. Talk to them with care and concern, just like your best boss or favorite teacher did for you. They weren't heroes; they were the guides in your life.

As a supervisor, it is important to understand your role as a guide and collaborator. Just like the heroines in stories, your job is to bring your team together, leverage their strengths, and achieve goals collectively. By embracing the concept of the heroine's journey, you can foster a culture of teamwork, collaboration, and delegation. Your role as a supervisor is crucial in creating a successful and cohesive team.

If you are interested in further developing your skills as a supervisor and becoming an even more effective guide for your team, be sure to check out our PeopleWork Supervisor Leadership Training program. This program will provide you with valuable insights and strategies to empower and bring your team together in pursuit of collective success. Don't miss out on this opportunity to enhance your leadership skills and make a lasting impact on your team. 

Topics: supervisor safety coaching, supervisor training, supervisor leadership, the carefull supervisor