Leaders have an incredible privilege – to be agents of change.
To accomplish this needs leaders who display certain qualities. John Maxwell says that people have to buy-in to the leader first before they buy-in to the vision and who am I not to agree. If a leader cannot display certain attributes then surely they fail to lead, they only bring confusion, questions and the lack of consistency which means people will not follow.
Here is an obvious one to start with (more to follow):
Good character opens opportunity.
It determines yor legacy.
It determines whether people fell you are worth listening to or not.
If in their opinion you lack good character then you shut the door to bringing lasting change.
Kouzes & Posner in the the book ‘The Leadership Challenge’ discovered that people are looking for leaders to display integrity, be truthful, trustworthy, have convictions, character and above all honesty!
If you don’t display these why should you think someone is going to buy-in to you. They might for a moment but once you let them down, regaining their allegance will be much harder, making lasting change more difficult.
Good character is doing the right thing even when its hard, even when it means it doesn’t always work out well for you. Soem would argue it is have convictions that you are willing to stand by.
Good character involves admitting mistakes and then putting them right. Good character requires taking responsibility. You can delegate as much as you like but ultimately as the leader you are still responsible. That’s integrity and people will love you for it. Obviously, if you keep making mistakes, especially the same one then it doesn’t matter how great your character is – you are proving yourself incompetent.
Love to hear your thoughts: what looking for in a leader and have you seen those qualities displayed anywhere recently?