Leading by example

Since we were young most of us have been told to lead by example. Most of us try to do this every day, in the workplace so few of us do it right.

Good leaders inspire people to improve and change. They do this by modeling ethics and values that inspire the rest of us to do the same. They unlock that extra 10% that we normally hold back.

In the workplace, many of the leaders we’re exposed to have a similar profile:

  1. They work rediculously long hours.
  2. They check their blackberry when your talking to them.
  3. They don’t show up to your meetings or they spend the whole meeting tapping away on their laptop or blackberry.
  4. The micro-manage your every move.
  5. They do what they should delegate and then take credit for everything you do.
  6. They recognize your mistakes but not your sucesses.

When was the last time someone like this inspired you? People like this usually inspire you to change jobs. The funny thing is these people are trying to lead by example, they are modeling their perception of a hard worker. Through their actions they are trying to tell you that IF you work as hard as me you too can succeed.

Hardwork is like light, if you focus it in the right way you can cut through anything. If you shine it into the sky it does nothing.

So, what type of manager should you model? That’s easy; model yourself after how you would like to be managed. Think about people in your past who inspired you, they we’re probably were never in a hurry, always calm and always had the right answers. They spent time with you and gave you feedback that you have never forgotten.

With my teams the following are always top priority:

1. Be respectful of people, give them the attention they deserve.
2. Be respectful of people’s work/life balance.
2. Set clear goals and objectives provide the support people need to succeed.
3. Communicate openly and respectfully, help people understand their value in the organization.
4. Provide constructive feedback and recognize success.

You’ll be amazed the difference it will make.

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One response to “Leading by example

  1. Leading by example is something that cannot be taught, nor shared, nor inspired. Natural leaders are in essence those individuals with special talent and an innate ability to handle pressure. I am a strong believer that a strong leader must possess one basic premise to become a true leader and a visionary. That would be risk. It is risk that provides leaders with the natural talent to want to seek out the best or in some cases the worst of people.
    If you can make a perfect stranger smile for even one second, you have made progress.

    I don’t want to ramble on here but your words and thoughts make me think of the great Martin Luther King. ” A man is not a man unless he has something to fight for”. Leaders permit those to fight to improve, fight to innovate and most of all fight to be the best individual they can be.

    I can say for a fact that you are a natural leader. Writing a blog about your challenges means that you have the innate ability to want to lead.

    Keep up the good work…

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