What a Horse has Taught Me About Leadership

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary (http://www.merriam-webster.com/) defines Leadership and Management as:


  • a position as a leader of a group, organization, etc.
  • the time when a person holds the position of leader
  • the power or ability to lead other people


  • the act or art of managing :  the conducting or supervising of something (as a business)
  • judicious use of means to accomplish an end
  • the collective body of those who manage or direct an enterprise

For those of you that know me on a personal level, you know that I own a Thoroughbred Rescue Farm and that I also compete in Eventing in my spare time.  Being around and working with horses can teach you a lot about yourself.  You have to learn how to communicate with a 1000lb+ animal.  It first starts with building trust.  And once gained, the horse will look to you to be their leader.

Horses by nature look for leadership.  Some establish themselves as the leaders while others fall into place under them.  This is very similar to humans.  We either lead a group or are being led.  We are all leaders at some point in our lives, but within the group there are managers.  Those that are empowered to take action to get things accomplished.  To lead effectively, you have to gain the trust of your group. Force is not a form of leadership.  You as an individual must decide where you want to be in a pecking order.

I was walking one of my horses in from the field the other day and just starting thinking about the many life lessons I am learning.  I don’t manage my heard; but rather lead them.  They trust me that I will not put them in danger and if there is danger, I will do everything in my power to remove the danger.  I will guide and correct behaviors, however they manage themselves.  They have to.  And when I am riding/competing, we become a team and need to act as one. Two brains, two opposites, but acting as one for the same goal.  When we make a mistake, unfortunately it usually turns out to be me.  The horse trusted me and I gave the wrong signal, didn’t give a signal, etc.  My horses have taught me humility and how to learn from a mistake.  But they have also taught me confidence.  I need to be confident in my actions and decisions as they will affect both myself and them.

Look at your office environment. This same dynamic happens. Organizations are defined by hierarchy.   There are leaders and managers.   Employees establish themselves into roles under their leader/manager.  We need this to be successful as an organization.  When a manager or their leader falters, employees will falter and vice versa.

As a professional, I am blessed to lead a team of sales professionals.  I provide them the organizational goals, guidance, tools for their job, and empower them to be successful with the company.  Along the way there will be adjustments but as long as the reasons are clear and understood, resistance is minimal.  We are our own herd, moving as one to reach the same common goal, Success!

Want to learn more about the keys to leadership and managing a successful sales team? Contact Gary at 301.360.0001 or email sales@ktlsolutions.com

GARY FRANCART | Director of Sales

Gary joined KTL in May of 2005 and has been continuously committed to ensuring a successful partnership and innovation of our customer’s business goals. His priority is to understand your organizational mission, vision, and strategic plan. Gary brings a wealth of knowledge to assist our customer’s product selection and implementation. With a visionary approach, he is able to ensure that KTL meets the ever-changing demands of technology business applications for complete customer satisfaction. Gary has over 18 years of technology sales and leadership – 10 of which were spent specializing in Business Applications such as Microsoft Dynamics, Acumatica Cloud ERP, CRM, and Business Intelligence solutions.

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