The best leaders pull, not push, leading by example. When suggesting that your team consider each other with more empathy then not spending any time truly listening and empathizing with your own staff, a leader is clearly not setting an example. This saying one thing but doing another quickly erodes trust, a critical element of productive leadership, and key to the know-like-trust factor crucial to all relationships
It is through their actions that are aligned with what they say, they become a person others want to follow.
Here are 10 of the dozens of ways to lead by example.
1. Take responsibility. Blame costs you your credibility, keeps team members on the defensive and ultimately sabotages real growth.
2. Be truthful. Inaccurate representation affects everyone. Show that honesty really IS the best policy.
3. Be courageous. Walk through fire (a crisis) first. Take calculated risks that demonstrate commitment to a larger purpose.
4. Acknowledge failure. It makes it OK for your team to do the same and defines failure as part of the process of becoming extraordinary.
5. Be persistent. Try, try again. Go over, under or around any hurdles to show that obstacles don’t define your company or team.
6. Create solutions. Don’t dwell on problems; instead be the first to offer solutions and then ask your team for more.
7. Listen. Ask questions. Seek to understand. You’ll receive valuable insights and set a tone that encourages healthy dialogue.
8. Delegate liberally. Encourage an atmosphere in which people can focus on their core strengths.
9. Take care of yourself. Exercise, don’t overwork, take a break. A balanced team, mentally and physically, is a successful team. Model it, encourage it, support it!
10. Roll up your sleeves. Like Alexander the Great leading his men into battle, you’ll inspire greatness in your company when you demonstrate your willingness to do what you’re asking your team to undertake.