Becoming a Guide on Your Leadership Journey

“Customers aren’t looking for another hero; They are looking for a guide.”
– Donald Miller in Building a Story Brand.

Yoda to Luke, Mr. Miyagi to Daniel, Barney Thompson to Vivian – these characters from some classic movies include a guide and a hero. In each story the protagonist, the hero of the story, benefits from some wise counsel from his or her guide. Miller’s book is about using story-telling techniques to create great marketing campaigns. I’d suggest that we can apply those same ideas in our quest to become servant leaders.

It is tempting in our role as leaders to want to be a hero to those we serve. It feels good to save the day and to be perceived as a hero. Miller asserts in his book that in storytelling, in business and in life, people aren’t looking for a hero, they are looking for a guide. Our clients are already the central character in their own business.  Those we serve as leaders are already the heroes of their own story. Their story doesn’t need another hero. It needs another caring guide. As a servant leader, those we serve aren’t looking to be rescued, they seek guidance. Guides teach. Guides offer direction. Guides enable others to achieve their goals. Guides provide insight. Guides lead people to self-discovery.

My challenge to you as you continue your leadership journey, is to seek to become a Yoda to a “Luke” in your world.  Find ways to share your experiences and your understanding with a hero in your circle. Continue to lead the Interstates way.


David Krahling, Interstates VP Business Development