One of the things that frustrate many people in leadership positions is their people not doing what they are told to do. They don’t follow directions and frequently ignore what the leader says.
It’s kinda true that many people don’t listen to what their leader says. That’s because they are too busy watching what their leader does.
Authentic Leaders know that their actions speak louder, much louder, than their words. They know that people will do what their leader does about 1000 times faster than they will do what their leader says. Authentic Leaders know that they are the model for the behavior of their people. Not only are they the model for behavior, they are the model for their attitude as well.
If you’re in a leadership position then you must be hyper-aware that your people are watching you. Always. They watch to determine if what you say is what you mean. If your actions match your words then they will do what you say. If your words say one thing and your actions another then they typically discard your words and do what you did.
They know that while they may misinterpret your words they can clearly see what you’ve done. Doing what you do is “safer.” What you do likely helped put you into a position they would like to be in one day. It only makes sense that they would follow the example you set for them.
You confuse them when you get frustrated because they did what you did. You may not realize that you’re leading by example but you most certainly are. Whether you intend to or not.
Whatever behavior you “model” for your people is the behavior your people will give you.
It works the same with the attitude your people display. If you demonstrate a negative attitude to your people then don’t be surprised when your people demonstrate one to you. If you’re leading a group of people with a negative attitudes the source of that attitude most likely looks back at you from the mirror every morning.
Most people in leadership positions don’t like it, or agree with it, when I say that. They believe they are the sunshine in everyone’s day. Let me encourage you to look at yourself again. Maybe hit record on your smartphone and “listen” to yourself for a few hours. You may be surprised at how negative you sound…if you listen with an open mind.
As a leader, do you cultivate an atmosphere where negative attitudes go to die or do you allow an atmosphere where negative attitudes can thrive?
Authentic leaders know that when it comes to behavior and attitudes they will most likely get what they give. That’s why they work to consistently model an attitude of success and the behavior that goes along with it.
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