A Brand Old Leadership Model

Who amongst us has not cheated?  Larry says, ‘not me’; but I’ve played golf with Larry, and there’s always a “preferred lie”!

Make no mistake – we are in a leadership crisis.  I know that sounds dramatic, pessimistic, fatalist even; I don’t want it to be but there it is.

Our toxic leaders are casting a broad shadow.  We say we loathe their behaviour and yet there they are, and here we are, still.

Why do we follow corrosive bosses and tolerate dishonest politicians?  Why do so many destructive and greedy business leaders gain and hold so much power?  What sort of culture do we have that promotes dishonest behaviour?

Who’s advising our leaders of the fact they are alienating all but those who are in their image?  Who of us will risk standing away from the group to do the right thing early and with compassion?

Who of us is brave enough to provide honest feedback to temper contemptuous behaviour, set boundaries on the loud, overbearing colleague?  …I don’t mean after a critical incident where our own self-righteousness becomes the devil incarnate or on social media where shaming is safely hidden at arm’s length – that’s the coward’s way.

Why do we place into leadership roles people who are not yet ready to apply the wisdom of cause and effect, not yet able to understand that improving the performance of their mind is now what counts most?  Why do we then abandon the poor souls – when they make the error even Blind Freddy could have seen coming – to solitude and shame?  We ask for nothing more than mediocrity and when it’s delivered with a powerful sting we feel offended.

The challenges we have in 2018 are growing in importance and urgency.   How will we choose to define ourselves?  Will we choose to be a nation intent on growing our minds, opening our hearts and doors, showing forgiveness?

Will we have the courage so desperately needed to drop our craving for significance, wealth and fame and help shape our future leaders, and ourselves, in the noble arts of focused discipline, ethical achievement, generosity of spirit, kindness and gratitude?

We need to reach out with compassion.  We need to get off our high horses and be the better standard ourselves; stop cheating ‘at golf’, at life, and then castigating others with impunity.

These ‘boys’ have done no more or less than what we’ve allowed in this country.  Was this really sport’s darkest day?

Leadership and Likeability

Contrary to conventional wisdom, likeability is high on the scale of importance for successful leaders.

Likeability is a genuine kindness and compassion for others that comes wholly from within and extends indiscriminately without.  It is generous in its offering and profoundly felt when received.

Leadership needs positive intent.  It is more than people merely getting along with one another, being pleasant and ‘nice’ and avoiding conflict.  Every interaction and conversation had by a direct supervisor or manager is an opportunity to stretch beyond the basics. 

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