Weekly Thought – March 19, 2019
Fred studied leadership his entire life. He read, but the majority of his study was through the in-depth observation of and conversation with true leaders. He used what he learned to operate as an outstanding leader in business and Christian work.
Fred’s great friend Harold Myra co-authored with Gary Chapman, and Paul White an outstanding book titled “Rising Above A Toxic Workplace: Taking Care of Yourself in an Unhealthy Environment.” It gives the reader confidence and hope.
Almost every leader publicly espouses the line: “People are our greatest resource.” In my years of interaction with industry and ministry leaders I have found it not uncommon to find some who don’t really allow others to develop. Even the unintentional placing of obstacles retards the growth and development of others in their organization.
In thinking about it here are ten methods which hinder up and coming leadership:
1) Magnify the risk: “I know you want this job, but remember, if you fail, you are out!”
2) Minimize the reward: Instead of talking about the sheer joy of accomplishment, they emphasize the drudgery. “How does your spouse feel about your not coming home for dinner? There will be a lot of night work and weekend hours if you accept this new position.”
3) Create a threat: “How do you think you handle criticism? As a boss you will have to get over that. Everybody in this place and this position gets criticism from others.”
4) Show a lack of confidence: “I doubt you are really the right person, but we don’t have anybody else. Somebody needs to fill this position.”
5) Expect results too soon: “In a couple of weeks you ought to be on top of this job.”
6) Deny support: “I’m not going to be able to give you much help. You are just going to have to dive in and swim.”
7) Create an atmosphere of criticism: “You can’t do anything right. We really thought you had the talent for this position.”
8) Overstate the effort required: “You probably will have to get used to working weekends – and forget about a vacation this year. You will go home with a headache, a back ache and dread tomorrow, but that is the price we pay for leadership around here!”
9) Suggest peer rejection: “You’re not really a people person, are you? This job requires high people contact and team building. Even though it doesn’t look like a fit I am willing to give you a shot at it.”
10) Emphasize the pressure: “The last person in this job just couldn’t take the heat.”
Leaders who sabotage the growth of others create toxic environments. They create insecurity and unsettle potential leaders. No one wants to work for those who take all the credit and shift all the blame. Healthy organizations reflect institutionalized development and growth. Ego management requires all leaders to check all misdirected motivations, creating environments of truth and trust.
This week think about: 1) Have I ever discouraged another because I was insecure? 2) What is my strongest development strategy for emerging leaders? 3) How can I stay cognizant of these negative attitudes in my business, church, or family?
Words of Wisdom: “It is not uncommon to find leaders who don’t really allow others to develop.”
Wisdom from the Word: “Then the local people began to discourage the people of Judah and to dishearten them from building.” (Ezra 4:4 NET Bible)