Discover more from How to Lead Everybody (with their permission)
Beware the shades of gray
As leaders, we are always being watched.
Not in a creepy way, of course—we are role models for the accepted standards of behavior for our teams and our companies. We need to make sure we are sending the right messages through our words and actions.
Follow through on your commitments. If you say you’ll do something by Thursday, do it by Thursday. If “you meant to take care of it” but don’t, your people will learn that they can’t count on you… and they may also learn that they can slide on their own commitments.
Avoid hypocrisy. As a leader, you should have high standards and ethics. And you—of all people—should live up to them. If you tell your people “these office supplies are for in-office use only,” but then let your kid make a school project with a bunch of those same supplies that you brought home for them, your people will lose SO MUCH respect for you. Hypocrisy makes people look weak. Your team members will no longer trust you.
Do the right thing, even when it is not the easy thing. Pay what you owe. Make the effort to get that lost cell phone back to its owner. Return your shopping cart to one of those parking-lot corrals. Leave a shared space (like the office kitchen) cleaner than you found it. Look for ways to make the world around you a little kinder and nicer for everyone. It makes you feel decent, becomes a good habit, and it builds other people’s respect for you, because you choose to act with the intention of making their lives better.
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