[vimeo id="117808391"] We’ve all heard the old saying that leaders should lead by example. That they should model the behavior that they want to see replicated in their organization. Some leaders will argue that people should do as they say and not as they do. However, nothing is more ineffective than asking people to do things that you would not do. The bottom line is that if we’re not modeling what we want to see replicated, we’re being pretty ineffective, not only as leaders, but as people. I want to share a few reasons why leading by example is the best way to lead an organization.
First, it cultivates credibility for the leader. People don’t follow talk, but they follow people who walk the talk. Would you follow someone who said one thing and did the complete opposite? I think you would have a hard time following their lead. When people live what they say, they will command the loyalty of the group they lead. People who don’t do what they say, are essentially lying. They’re like empty glasses of water. There is no substance to what they’re saying because there’s nothing to back up their claims. So always do what you say you will do.
Second, it creates proximity. Leaders who aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and get to work will always develop a personal presence with the team. Leaders who stand on the pedestal will always create distance. When leaders work with the team, they develop a level of camaraderie. It communicates that they’re committed to the project. It shows that they’re not special, but just people who are willing to put in the time and effort that is necessary to see the mission succeed. Leading by example means that we’re willing to do the work, regardless of titles and positions.
Third, it develops a team spirit. Team spirit is this sense of we’re in this together. A team in essence is a community of people accomplishing something together. Just like a captain on a football or basketball team is with the players the whole way through to the championship, so should leaders of organizations be committed to the mission. They may be the captain, but they would not be if it weren’t for the team that they’re leading. If the captain was absent, the team spirit would be low. If a captain bails out in the middle of difficulties, the team spirit would collapse. If leaders lead by example they will cultivate a strong team spirit.
Thanks for checking out my blog. If you have any follow up thoughts about what I’ve shared today, please feel free to respond below, I’d love to hear from you.