I was speaking to a company manager recently concerning the struggles of their fledgling business. It was successful for many years but a change of personnel in recent times changed the effectiveness of the company. They had implemented new policies to streamline them back into a competitive business in their field but were still continuing the downward spiral. However, the more she talked the more I realized that the policies were not the problem but the lack of principled leadership was the real culprit. How did I know? The conversation revealed how the top three individuals of the company’s management team were constantly backbiting, lying, finding fault with one another, and spreading this throughout the employees of the business.
You can have the best policies, programs, and systems, but if you don’t have principled centered leadership in management or in a nation, the success of these are doomed to failure. Lack of principle creates division which guarantees failure or dismal results at best. The quality of individuals, not policies, is the starting point for a vision to become a reality. Yes, systems of operations and policies are all necessary to fulfill vision, but if they have no solid foundation then they will not become the success they were designed to be. Principled centered leadership is the foundation which will provide the support for long lasting policy success.
Why is it so important to be principled centered in my leadership life? John Maxwell said it best
People buy into the leader before they buy into the vision.
How do I establish my expectation of those around me to be principled in their leadership? Hold people accountable for their speech and actions. Tolerating something is giving silent approval. Remember to set the example by not divorcing your words from your own actions. Personal example enforces your expectations in others and it alerts them that you are to be taken seriously.