The Leadership Lid Ep #145

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Has your social selling business grown stagnant? Do you feel like you have a good handle on how this industry works - you know how to sell your product, and you’ve grown your audience - but still feel like you’re not advancing or seeing your income grow like it should? There are a number of factors that you can examine to try and find the root of the issue. But chances are, it’s a leadership problem.

Has your social selling business grown stagnant? Do you feel like you have a good handle on how this industry works – you know how to sell your product, and you’ve grown your audience – but still feel like you’re not advancing or seeing your income grow like it should? There are a number of factors that you can examine to try and find the root of the issue. But chances are, it’s a leadership problem.

If you seem to have hit a wall in your social selling business, then that wall might actually be a lid. In this episode, Kristen discusses the Law of the Lid and how you can’t grow beyond a certain point unless you learn to grow your leadership skills as well. 

Let’s look at a few highlights from this episode: 

  • The differences between being a manager and being a leader
  • Why your team’s growth might be stunted by letting them figure things out on their own
  • Importance of solving for why your team isn’t making their business a priority
  • Questions to ask to find out if you have a leadership gap
  • Examples of unhealthy leadership types

If you don’t have the skills to grow and develop your team – you won’t be able to close the gap and move forward in your business. But the good news is that these skills can be taught. It’s just a matter of taking responsibility as a leader and identifying what areas you need to improve upon. Before you know it, you’ll be watching your team soar to new heights with you at the helm.

If you’d like to stay up to date with what Kristen has coming on the horizon, sign up for our email list and be the first to hear about new projects: Kristen Boss Email Alerts

Are you looking for an online community where you can be inspired to be the best version of you in 2023? Look no further!  Join Kristen’s new Facebook Community, The Purposeful Social Selling Community, where you can connect with other like-minded social sellers looking to break the hustle cycle and find sustainable growth in the new year. Join for free by clicking here.

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Transcript for Episode #145 The Leadership Lid:

Kristen Boss (00:03):  You are listening to the Kristen Boss Podcast. I’m your host, Kristen Boss. As a bestselling author and performance coach, I’m on a mission to share about sustainable and purposeful approaches to both business and life. Each week I bring relevant topics that I believe are necessary to create a life of purpose, significance and meaning. Entrepreneurship is about so much more than growing your bottom line. It’s about who you are becoming in the process and building a life that is truly extraordinary. Entrepreneurship is really just the beginning.

Kristen Boss (00:56):  Hey, hey, bosses. Welcome to another episode of podcast. Today we’re going to be talking about something that I love talking about. We’re going to talk about leadership. And you have probably heard the John Maxwell, the law of the lid, or the term, the law of the lid, the leadership lid, meaning that you cannot grow beyond a certain point unless you grow in your leadership skills. So we’re going to talk about the law of the lid, about the leadership lid, and why I think people don’t have larger incomes in their business. And I’m going to even call it the leadership gap. And I noticed this a lot, is that people, they can understand the mechanics of social selling. They understand, okay, I’m going to talk about the product, talk about the business. And they get builders to, they have a team and they’re selling the products and they understand the mechanics.

Kristen Boss (01:49):  They’re getting customers, they’re getting builders, but they noticed, it feels like their business feels a little bit like a treadmill. It’s not really going anywhere. They’re busy, they’re bringing people in, but the team’s not growing. They’re not advancing. The paycheck’s not growing. Why is it? And it’s actually a leadership problem. And because what I see people do is they get people into their organization and they will get these people to share their goals. These people will say, yes, I’m so excited. Let’s go. Let’s do this. I can’t wait. And then suddenly these people, they’re not responding to their messages. They’re not coming to the team calls. They disappear completely. They’re ghosting people. And the leaders are like, what happened? What happened? I gave them a protocol. I plugged them into the systems. I put them into the team page. We got the goal. What happened?

Kristen Boss (02:36):  They were all into it. It’s likely that you have been a manager and not a leader. If you want a team who works for you and feels like they have a boss, be a manager. But if you want a team that learns to work for themselves, and you have to learn to lead people, leading people is infinitely harder than managing people, managing people. You talk at them, you just tell them what to do. In this business that does not work. If anything, you could, and you may have experienced this, where you bring someone on and they say, yes, yes, I’m ready to work the business. And they’re all excited. And you say, okay, here’s what we’re going to do. You’re going to make a post. And then everyone who likes with the post, you’re going to send them this message. And then you’re going to create a Facebook group.

Kristen Boss (03:24):  And then, oh look, here’s the template for the Facebook group. You’re going to host this party. And you give them a step by step by step by step. And you’re on the call with them and they’re like, yeah, yeah, yeah, okay. Oh yeah, excited. Let’s do it. And you’re going to say, okay, so send the message and then do this, and then I’ll check back in with you. You give them the plan, the step-by-step, and then you check back in with them. You’re going to be like, Hey, how’d it go? Did you write the post? Yeah, I didn’t get what I got really overwhelmed with my kids’ homework schedule. Or there’s a last minute lacrosse game that we had to get to. Ah, I just didn’t get around to it. I’m going to do it. I’m going to do it. And you’re like, oh. Oh, okay.

Kristen Boss (03:58):  Well why don’t we just do it now? Okay, well sure, let’s do it now. Does this sound familiar? Is this a page out of your book? And then suddenly they’re hard to get ahold of and they’re not host, they’re not doing anything. They’re not working anymore. And then, or there’s the ones that are all excited and they get a false start. They start and they have a couple hiccups, and then suddenly they’re like, you know what? I don’t think this is for me. This is really hard. I don’t have enough time. Because everybody thinks that one post, they’re going to have a hundred people come running to them and buying from them because they don’t understand the process. And this is often where people fail to lead, is they fail to lead people through the process. And I think one of the most unproductive thoughts leaders have is this, are you ready?

Kristen Boss (04:47):  Well, I figured it out. They should be able to figure it out. I would not you guys, I would not have a social Zion Academy if that was my thought. I figured it out. Y’all should figure it out too. But their brain is not wired like yours. You don’t know about their experience. They could have been for whatever. Maybe they have no social selling experience at all whatsoever. And you’re like, well, no one was there for me and I figured it out cause I wanted it bad enough. But that’s not leadership. That’s entitlement. That’s abandonment. I know I’m using strong words, but it is, that’s what it is. It’s abandonment. It’s saying figure it out on your own. And you wonder why your paycheck is suffering, because obviously they’re not figuring it out on their own. People need to be led. And again, imagine this.

Kristen Boss (05:32):  So imagine if you have a figure it out on your own. Well, we all know that when somebody figures it out on their own, it takes them much longer than if they had someone lay out a clear and simple path for them in order to have success. But figuring out on their own is literally just saying, Hey, let’s make it take longer and be more painful than it needs to be in order to get to where you want to go. But it does take you slowing down as a leader and teaching them how to do things, how to do the mechanics. And if you don’t have good systems, then you’re caught in 30 different conversations with 30 different people that all have the same question. And you start to feel resentful. Oh God, why aren’t they getting it? How many times do I have to say it’s in the group or it’s in, it’s over here.

Kristen Boss (06:16):  It’s this link, it’s the faq, it’s this video. How many times do I have to tell these people where to go and what to do? How many times do I have to point them to the team calendar? How many times do I have to send a Zoom link? If this is you, this tells me you have a system problem. Systems solve for where you feel like everything is redundant, where you’re just a broken record. That’s what you put in a system. Like, okay, what’s the FAQs? What am I always asked? Where do I need to put these people in a group together? You have to humble yourself as a leader. You have to get in the dirt and be like, okay, I’m going to help them. And where I see leaders get frustrated as well is they get annoyed. They get annoyed When people get discouraged, they get annoyed.

Kristen Boss (07:00):  When people have bad days, they get annoyed. When people come with their time excuses and they’re busy, listen, you’re going to hear I’m busy. From your team from now until forevermore. It is always going to be the thing that you are leading them through. It is always going to be the thing where you have to teach them how to prioritize their time. It is always going to be there. It’s never going to go away. But if you’re annoyed and be like, Ugh, well, you make time for the things that are important. You actually have to get to why aren’t they making time? Yes, you could say, well, I know it’s because it’s not a priority. But you have to actually understand, wait, hold on. Why is it not a priority for them? And I can tell you why. It’s a belief issue because people make time for things that they know are going to work.

Kristen Boss (07:48):  They make times for thing time for things that they believe in. And there’s some part of them that doesn’t believe that they can actually make money in this business, which is why they’re not putting in the time. And you as the leader have to solve for why. You have to figure out why do they believe this? Where do I need to point them to? And it’s so funny, I also, leadership is also about having the hard conversations. But I think people misinterpret that about as I’m just going to say the hard things. And if you’re not careful, you can just come across as an aggressive meaning with your team instead of saying the hard things is saying it in love and not out of annoyance or frustration. But most of the time when leaders are tired, they’re annoyed, they’re frustrated, they think saying the hard things is like, I’m just going to kick them in the butt and tell them how it is.

Kristen Boss (08:37):  And if they want it bad enough, they’re going to come back. It’s like, it’s it. Think about, it’s, a lot of times it’s a, it’s almost like a parent kid dynamic. And we tend to live that out in our leadership style. It’s like, okay, well they should show me that they want it. Yes, that’s true. But if you haven’t helped them with the basic mechanics, if you haven’t taken the time to teach them and lead them, then of course they’re not going to want it. Of course, their excuses are going to be loud. And I would just say, I think the best thing you can do is hold space for them and be like, yeah, of this is part of it. This is the human brain. They’re going to fight. They’re going to get discouraged. They’re going to want to quit every other Thursday because this, it’s not a problem with you until you make it a problem with you.

Kristen Boss (09:26):  But this is just human behavior. You have to understand that it’s not that they don’t want it. There are some people that genuinely don’t want it and you’ll know. But the ones who are quitting every other Thursday, it’s their lacking belief. That’s really what this is. And your work as a leader is pouring a lot of belief into your team over and over again. You’re never going to be like that. Part of your job description is never done. And so I see people kind of becoming the manager like, okay, I’m just going to tell people what to do. And then they continually get annoyed when they tell people what to do and the person reports back and nothing gets done. And then there’s the cheerleader. The cheerleader is the rah rah friend. You got this, you got this. I’m so excited for you. Hype. Yes, let’s do it.

Kristen Boss (10:11):  Oh honey, I believe in your goals. Let’s go. I’m so excited They’re there to rally, but they are not there to say the truth. They’re not there when it comes to accountability. They’re like, oh no, I don’t do that because I’m going to hurt their feelings. What if they get mad at me? What if they think I’m, I am trying to make money off of them? What if they think I’m unkind? So because they’re a cheerleader, they don’t know how to actually lead. Because leading requires you to sacrifice your own feelings, your own sense of your sense, okay, it’s okay if my feelings get hurt in this. I’m going to say this for their benefit and with love for them, not an annoyance, not with resentment, not in frustration. But I’m going to lead in love and ask the hard question. Hey, so why do you think that is?

Kristen Boss (11:03):  Hey, I noticed in our last call you mentioned this was important and you even mentioned you needed it to pay for your kids to be in daycare or whatever it is. Tell me a little bit more about that. Why do you think that is? Hey, I just couldn’t help but notice that the last three calls, you seem really distracted. What’s going on? A leader asks questions. A manager makes assumptions, assumes a leader asks the hard question. A leader leads by example. A leader demonstrates to the team how to show up. A leader goes first. A leader is always holding themselves to a higher standard. So this idea of like, okay, so how do I know if I’ve hit the lid? And I would say oftentimes it’s like, how often do you feel triggered by your team emotionally annoyed, pissed, frustrated, depressed? You want to throw your phone if you hear from so-and-so, one more time.

Kristen Boss (11:59):  By Golly. You’re just going to, you’re going to lose your mind where you think about God, my team just feels like I’m trying to drag the dead with me. If you are in annoyance, if you feel like you can’t get your team to perform, this is a leadership lid problem. It’s so easy to think this is them problem. But a leader says, how is this a me problem? The leader always asks, how have I created this? How have I created the reality where people feel like coming to a team call is not a priority, it’s just how have I created the culture where five people come live and people ask for the recordings, and then when I talk to them, it’s very clear they haven’t watched the recordings and there’s just no standard. I’m just not holding anybody to a higher standard from love. Not a standard that makes me feel good about myself.

Kristen Boss (12:57):  Leadership that’s about you. Where it’s like, well, I need a lot of faces on this zoom call so I can feel important. Instead of, okay, why is it important for them to be on the call if it’s not about me at all? How have I sold being on team calls to my team? Why should they come? Have I actually taken the time to explain why it’s important? Do you make a plan for your team calls, or do you just show up and you’re like, alright, so we’re going to talk about I don’t know, got questions. What’s going on? Or do you feel like you need to put on a show where you’re like, I’m going to hype everybody up and you are so exhausted because you feel like every other week you have to, it’s the high school musical for the team calls. You’re putting on music, you’re wearing a hat, you’re wearing goggles, and you’re like, let’s go, let’s go.

Kristen Boss (13:44):  And you’re like, oh my gosh, I don’t know if I can keep doing this. It doesn’t feel sustainable to hype them up every week and put on a show. You don’t have to put on a show. It’s just you got to learn to lead. And you can’t lead people if you haven’t done some necessary inner work where you’ve actually learned to become a very self-aware leader and understand, okay, wait, hold on. What are my triggers here? Why am I getting so annoyed every time this comes up? Why have I not taken the time to build a system? Why have I not hired a VA when I know it will take me out of the weeds of my business and I can do better performing activities? Why have I been leading from scarcity? Why have I not made a plan every single month? And why do I go running to my leader with five days left in the month completely panicked because it doesn’t look like I’m going to hit rank or my paycheck’s going to drop and I suddenly ask them to come up with a strategy plan for me so we can throw a hail Mary out there and I’m going to send all these messages to my team and hope to God that I make the rank and I still get paid at what I’m doing.

Kristen Boss (14:50):  And then I’m going to check out again next month for the next two weeks. Oh, I’m saying some really intense things and I know, listen, listen, listen. Before you pull the car over and punch the dashboard or throw your phone, please, no, this is said with love. You have to hear this because I want you to have more success. But the reason why more most people stall out in their income is because they don’t know how to ask hard questions. They don’t know how to actually hold people accountable. They don’t know how to structure a team call. They don’t know how to have conversations with someone who is missing their goals. They don’t know how. They’re terrified to follow up with people. They’re terrified to ask questions. They don’t know when the last time was. They got a why, revisited the why with their team members.

Kristen Boss (15:35):  They’re not having calls with their team, they’re avoiding their team. They’re like, oh my God, I’m just going to avoid them because I don’t even know what I would say. I’m so annoyed I’ve said it all 50 million times. And you know what? I’m just sick of saying the same thing over and over again. So I’m going to be busy every time Sarah reaches out to me like you are not helping yourself and you’re not helping them. This is a lid problem. This is the leadership gap. If you can learn to lead people exceptionally well, you will grow your paycheck extraordinarily. But here’s the thing with leadership. With leadership, you’re leading people and people are messy. People are coming with their baggage and their business. They’re coming with their childhood wounds. They’re coming with with old baggage. They’re coming with insecurities, they’re coming with their doubts. They’re coming with unresolved trauma. People are a mess. No matter where you go, people are so messy. And if you don’t have the skills to develop and help and lead and hold space for messy people, and because you are in a constant mess yourself, you can’t lead like the blind can’t lead the blind. You can’t save somebody who’s drowning if you don’t know how to swim yourself. And this is the lid. This is what closes the gap.

Kristen Boss (16:52):  So I want you to ask yourself, am I the cheerleader? Am I the manager? Am I the leader? What am I? Which 1:00 AM I feel like the last one is going to be super triggering, but maybe it’s worth talking about. And the last one is, am I the tyrant? Am I bullying people? Am I saying passive aggressive things? I’m I giving people the silent treatment in hopes that they’ll get the message? Am I telling people we better hit this goal? Or else am I using tactics in order to get people to work a certain way? Am I emotionally manipulating? Actually, I think the person that’s listening to this podcast, I don’t think they would even like my podcast. I think they’d hate me. So I don’t think there’s a tyrant listening to this. Or maybe you can call it a bully. And I want to say this, if please, it’s going to be so tempting for you to listen to this episode and label your upline.

Kristen Boss (17:54):  It is not your job. It is not your job to assess other leaders. It is. This is about you. Because if you’re busy looking at somebody else, again, you’re taking the lens again, you’re not taking responsibility. There’s your lesson again, you’re looking at somebody else and being like, well, I mean, I know her in the company she is. She’s totally a tyrant. Everyone knows it too. Or, oh gosh, yeah, she’s a cheerleader and it’s sweet and it’s great, but we’re not getting anywhere like you guys, right? Or ugh, I’m man, she’s a total manager. Oh, she’s a micromanager. It’s terrible. First of all, get your eyes off of everybody else and have an honest conversation about yourself and look at your own leadership and say, where am I pitfalls? Where am I responsible? Where do I default to when I am not in a healthy place?

Kristen Boss (18:40):  You will default to one of these leadership styles when you are in an unhealthy place, when you are not self-aware, understanding your leadership. When you are in unhealth, you will default to the cheerleader, the bully or the manager. You will become one of those. You will default to one. So I think it’s important to say, okay, which one do I tend to gravitate towards when I’m feeling really triggered? When I’m pissed off or when I’m scared, when I’m anxious that I’m not going to hit the goal when I’m anxious that I’m not going to win the trip when I’m anxious, that I’m not going to hit the incentive? Which one do I tend to lean towards? And I’m not trying to shame you. I’m just trying to bring awareness so that we can understand what needs healing. If you want to understand where your lid is, this is where it is being like, okay, I see that I’m going to even, there’s one we’re missing.

Kristen Boss (19:30):  Okay, so we’ve got the manager, we’ve got the leader, we’ve got the cheerleader, we’ve got the bully, we’ve got the last one. We have the victim. Someone who just moves completely into victim mentality and blames everyone and everything. It’s corporate. It’s the comp plan. It’s my upline or my lack. It’s my upline and her lack of involvement. It’s our crappy systems, it’s my va, it’s my downline. They don’t want it. It’s that one toxic leader of that one toxic lead. She’s totally keeping me down. You become a total victim to your business and you stop showing up and that’s when you’re like, I think I need a break. I’m going to just step away from my business for the next six months. That’s the last one. It’s the victim. So when you are in an unhealthy place, when you are not, you’re working on your leadership.

Kristen Boss (20:16):  When you are not developing these parts of yourself, when you’re not learning to understand your own nervous system, your fight, flight, freeze, or fond response, because guess what? You’re triggered all the time in leadership all the time. You’re going to have someone say something and you’re going to feel that, like that intensity in your body, and you’re going to want to react. Leaders are not reactive. They are proactive, they’re contemplative, but they’re not. They don’t react. They respond. They’re not reactive, they’re responsive. And so out of those styles, you just have to ask, do I become, do I gravitate toward the bully, the manager, the cheerleader, the victim? Those are the four in their unhealth. And then there’s the leader, right? Leader is who I become in health. But when I’m not healthy, when I’m not focusing on my leadership, you’re going to default to one of those. The bully or the tyrant, the cheerleader. The one who’s just the friend but can’t hold space for the hard right hides. I’m like, wait, hold on. I know I was there. The victim. And then the micromanager. The one who can’t let other piece other people leave. The one who’s constantly like, let me just do it myself. The one who’s constantly taking projects away, won’t let people step into leadership. Won’t let people run a call because you’re just so afraid to loosen your grip just a little bit.

Kristen Boss (21:42):  So I think it’s worth doing an inventory today. This is the lid, friends, and this year I’ve been quietly developing something. It’s going to address all of the things I just talked about and much more. So you’re going to want to stay tuned. We’ll catch ya in the next episode.

Kristen Boss (22:07):  That’s a wrap for today’s episode. Listen, if you love what you heard here today, I would love for you to leave a real quick rating and a review. This helps the show get discovered by new people. Be sure to take a screenshot of today’s episode and shout us out on Instagram. We’ll shout you right back out. If you’d like to find additional resources or discover how to work with me, head to

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