Organizational Change

Leaders Are The Best Artists Around!

"I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free" - Michaelangelo


Photo courtesy of JD Hancock via Compfight

We gardeners are a quirky group. As soon as we can spring outside after a long cold winter we begin cleaning up everything dead and well, get distracted.  We start to trim garden beds and we pull a shrub or two out on a whim. We sprinkle wood chips and end up expanding garden areas. We begin to see what can be, not what is in front of us. We look for nonperforming plants to pull out and envision the new cultivars that can replace them. Everything is a blank slate in the spring, even after plants are bursting with lush, wild, growth. It's taken me years to admit it but, an obsessed gardener IS an artist!


I've never considered myself an artist. I can be fairly creative, yet I like order and am a planner. I don't understand a lot of the "art" out there and am fairly certain my kids can create incredible works compared to what I've seen in some art galleries.  Some people are born with artistic  talent, others have to work at it by practicing, learning techniques, and  practicing. The same is true with any hobby or skill. I was born with a love for gardening, yet I wasn't always a natural. It's taken years of practicing, learning new stuff, trial and error, and patience to become the gardener I am today. Any gift boils down to creating confidence in yourself, motivation, a willingness to step out of your comfort zone, and persistence. You too can be an "artist" of any hobby or skill that you love.

"All gardening is landscape painting" - Alexander Pope


Gardens really are blank canvases from which we can imagine, create, plant, grow and bask in the final picture. There are so many options and combinations out there to play with. There's cottage gardens, tropical, conceptual, cactus, modern, traditional, herb gardens - the list goes on and on. There are so many ways to go about bringing a vision to life. As a gardener, you unconsciously look at  the whole picture and see what can be. You think about how to reach your vision. What will it take? Who can help you reach your artistic vision? You work with what you have (resources) to create something that will benefit and wow others.
 If you still doubt that you are an "artist" Consider some of the top traits of a successful artist (below along with a few of my own): Top 10 qualities of a great artist

  • Awareness of audience: Who are you reaching out to (other than yourself)?
  • Eye for design
  • Creativity
  • Humility
  • Knowledge of materials
  • Passion
  • Vision
  • Inner motivation
  • Have a plan
  • Don't give up!




Do these traits sound a bit familiar? They should. No matter what your purpose in life or your current focus -

You are an artist. These traits are ingrained within you. Guess what? Is leadership any different? Are leaders not artists as well? Don't leaders look at a canvas and imagine what can be and how to get there? You bet!

"Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere" - Albert Einstein

Photo Courtesy of Moises Rivera via Compfight

Like gardeners and artists, leaders unwittingly use artistic skills every day. We should treat our role like a fragile work of art. We look at the "canvas" before us as a new venture. We imagine and plan how to make the canvas come to life. How to make all the "elements" work together to empower others and further team success. What are the best materials to use (our people) and how can we help them make a difference on our canvas?


 Leaders strive to bring out the best in our people. We can be instrumental in molding them into masterpieces that contribute to the "piece" of art (vision) that we have before us. Leaders bring out the passion in others, we are visionary, not afraid to try something new. We are alive, engaged, curious, and aware. We bring that to our "art" and include our people in the end result. We share our canvas and want everyone to be a successful part of our overall masterpiece - our team.



No matter what kind of leader you are, you ARE an artist! You CAN help create something vibrant with impact. You HAVE the ability to pick up a "canvas" and LEAD through your art. Get out there and lead today. Sculpt something that will make a difference in the lives of others.




YOU ARE AN ARTIST....What will you do starting  right now?