Playing music is a great way to express yourself and relax, and what could be even better is earning money through your passion.
However, in an industry where only 1% of all artists earn 77% of total recorded music income, hitting the big time can sound almost impossible. Nevertheless, when we look at bands who have succeeded, we see something that they have in common – a strong leader who keeps the group together.
Queen had Freddie Mercury, The Rolling Stones had Mick Jagger and Nirvana had Kurt Cobain. All these leaders share aspects of communication, motivation and self-reflection that are the most important qualities to keep every member inspired and take the band all the way.
Communication Is Key
Being a leader means you need to recognize that everything isn’t about you. Identifying who in the band excels at different things is vital to work best, so don’t feel that you need to undertake every task.
Communicating between one another to comprehend everyone’s creative input and thought process prevents any disagreements or falling out, which could have a detrimental effect on your band’s likelihood to succeed in the future.
Any issues that arise can then be up for a discussion led by you to make sure that everyone is working at their best, and in perfect harmony.
If you put in 100%, you get 100% back. Encouraging your bandmates every step of the way, for every achievement will drive all of you towards success.
Reaching your goals together by looking out for one another will feel twice as good if the journey to reach them has been done together, so spurring them on only serves to benefit everyone.
Try going to a concert together so you can see what you are working for, or give them challenges such as writing lyrics, as the competition may spur them to work harder than ever.
Taking Responsibility & Self Reflect
Of course, not everything about being a leader can be fun. Sometimes difficult decisions need to be made which could decide the future of the band, such as who to choose as a new member, or deciding where to perform.
In these situations, you need to be calm and think carefully about what to do, as you’ve taken the responsibility as the leader to choose what happens next.
Listen to everyone else’s input first, it doesn’t have to be solely your decision but, at the end of the day, you are the judge who weighs up all the opinions and has the final say.
However, recognizing when you’ve made the wrong decision is so important to grow and develop as a leader. If you are able to admit your own mistakes, you can learn where you’ve gone wrong and improve on that, which will only make you stronger in the long run.
Be open-minded and listen to criticisms from your bandmates, as many bands that break up early lack this self-awareness in leadership. After all, 91% of all musicians are undiscovered and weak leadership due to ego-centrism and a lack of self-reflection is a contributing factor to this.
Playing music to earn a living is one of life’s greatest opportunities, so don’t let weak leadership ruin what could be a chance at great success.
Whatever your age, whether you’re still in school or happily retired, stepping up to fill this role is a challenge but if you aren’t afraid to listen to others and motivate your bandmates while taking time to recognize where you’ve gone wrong, then you definitely can do it.
If you want your band to be able to reach the top, you’re going to need to lead them there first but if you have the right qualities then there’s no reason why you can’t succeed.