So Who’s Gonna Be William Wallace?

Paul Kazanjian

So I want you to take a second and think about some sweet leaders. They could be real or fake, that doesn’t matter. What does matter, however, is the kind of person they are. Think about it for a minute.

Some that come to my mind would be FDR, William Wallace, or Aragorn from the Lord of the Rings. I would argue that everyone would agree that these guys are pretty good at being strong leaders. What’s interesting is how much people try to emulate these guys. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t want to be in Aragorn’s shoe as he commanded a ghost army, let’s be serious here. These guys are Saaweet with a capital “S” and they are good leaders. Another thing I find quite interesting is that leadership has an important role in today’s society whether you are aware of it or not, and being in a fraternity or sorority greatly increases your chances of being a strong leader. Let me explain.

One thing that really pushes my buttons is when people who are not in Greek life throw out that stereotype that frats are guys that drink beer and sororities are selfish valley girls who don’t care about anything. I can tell you one thing, which is that is not why I wanted to join a fraternity. I hoped to get friends for life, a true brotherhood, and learn important lessons that will help launch me into the rest of my life. I’m talking about leadership development. Let me give you a couple ways to foster leadership development in your houses and hopefully you’ll see why it’s important.

Obviously your respected house won’t have members unless you have a rush period or recruitment. Leadership development can certainly, and I would recommend it, start here. Don’t be afraid or cautious to invite the right kind of people into your house. Take this period seriously and set up a committee under your recruitment chair to make sure that the people you rush are interested in the house for the right reasons. Are they there just to party? Or are they there because they have an interest in Greek life and what it has to offer. Some applications to think about would to hold a relaxed interview session. This will give you a great chance to invite people into the house who have good character.

Once you have your class, why stop there? Continue promoting good leadership development by nurturing both bonding and friendship. Think logically for a minute, if they guys in the class don’t know each other, then how can they be productive brothers? The same goes for sorority sisters too! Use your imagination to come up with programs that will be both fun and beneficial for the class. Once they are close start to assign leadership responsibilities to different members of the new class, particularly those who show an above and beyond interest in leadership opportunities. Getting them started in leadership opportunities when they are young is imperative.

Lastly, form a committee under the fraternity or sorority educator and actually educate them on the history and values of your respected fraternity or sorority. I can guarantee you that leadership will be next to none if the new class does not know what they are joining. This will foster respect and a sense of honor for their house, which will lead to more leaders for the house.

Leadership development in the new classes of your fraternity and sorority is vital to the success and growth of your respected house. Having a strong leadership development program will provide security, better character, better reputation, and a sense of peace knowing that you can come back year after year and have confidence your house will be among the elite of the Greek community. And who is to say how the lessons they learned from you guys now, will affect them in the future.

One Response to “So Who’s Gonna Be William Wallace?”

  1. Here’s an example of everyday leadership that is understated and largely un-noticed by the majority. I am a SigEp alumnus and work for a CPA firm in the technology division. The managing partner of the CPA firm (about 80 employees) probably pulls in over $500k per year and bills a ton of hours each month. That part we expect. He’s usually the first one in the office and almost always one of the last to leave. Again, expected.

    Now guess where he parks – in the last row, furthest from the door. Why? Because he asked employees to give maximum space to paid parkers (other tennants as he owns the building) and because our clients come first.

    Want to lead? Lead by example and do what you ask others to do.

    Tom Wengler 1992 Illinois Kappa
    Chattanooga, TN

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