The aim for fairness is as old as humanity and as much as we’ve evolved we still struggle to achieve justice in every system where we congregate. Leaders have it harder. They too get wronged. The good, virtuous ones get wronged that much the more. Study history, you’ll see. Leaders have to understand this is the way it is and part of the price of leadership. It isn’t fair we hold leaders to a higher bar than we hold ourselves, but we do. It isn’t fair we give ourselves the benefit of the doubt when “we are over served,” but assassinate the character of our leader when he has one too many. And, it isn’t fair that leaders gotta think about what’s best for the system/team even when team members are out to sabotage them. Leaders, the few worth following, understand and accept this truth. Lead anything well and you are gonna pay for it. Fact.
Leaders, you see gotta own their own baggage and carry a bit of yours and mine too. Leaders gotta fight for what’s right even when they’ve been personally wronged. And this is why it pays to have good role models with virtuous principles to follow. My favorite is Jesus. His big three leadership principles (Model the way, Embrace pain and suffering, Embody truth in Love) are easy to understand and beyond hard to follow.
Model the way. Jesus taught by simply saying “follow me.” He led perfectly from the front even when his team fell asleep, couldn’t quite keep up, and actively betrayed Him. Embrace pain and suffering. Jesus ran into the acute stuff. He didn’t take the easy way out and understood the price required. Embody truth in Love. Jesus loved us enough to die on that old rugged cross knowing full well He had done nothing wrong. Talk about tweaking a justice thread. Jesus showed us the power of His Grace. We, the world, are still trying to figure out what makes no sense.
Model the way. Embrace pain and suffering. Embody truth in Love.
These are three really hard leadership principles that none of us can possibly live out. These are three principles worth striving toward, aren’t they? What principles are you fixing your gaze upon, friend? Slow down and sit with this for awhile. Your principles, whatever they are, make a world of difference for you and your leadership philosophy. You choose. Your choices have consequences, leader. Choose wisely. Good…