Vanguard...a military term! As is Picket, Strike too. It's locked in peoples minds as...VANGUARD PARTY, the Communist Party. Notions of vanguardism have been repudiated by many communists in Britain. An enlightened minority leading ignorant masses anywhere cannot stand scrutiny.
Of course, individual workers are capable of behaving in a way that invites instruction and command. Religious adherence is an example that springs to mind. This is a voluntary suspension of responsibility for independent thought, a description that applies to all religious-like behaviours, some of which may describe themselves as 'political'.
Any behaviour guided by any form of idealistic thought is susceptible to the process of command by those further along the path towards the attainment of the ideal state. The racially pure shall rule the world and remove the contamination of the inferior. Those closer to God shall rule the less enlightened and those most pure in their 'socialist' ideals can do anything they like to anyone. None of this has been the history of workers in Britain. We fought the Nazis. We are the least religious class in the world and have consistently rejected all political idealisms.
Lenin was wrong to put so much emphasis on the PARTY. The phrase, vanguard party, could be best described as a home for armchair generals, largely self-proclaimed. Still I don't expect the term or concept to vanish....wherever a self appointed 'elite' gathers, it will have its admirers.
Lenin made a better job of Democratic Centralism, he studied the structures and organization of British Trade Unions whilst in London and saw the strengths that form might take in forging the Proletarian Party.