Leadership is all about relationships and to be in relationship (with anyone) is to be vulnerable. Every single day, leaders are called to navigate uncertainty, risk, and emotional exposure – the only choice is to do it consciously or unconsciously; to lean into the vulnerability or to push it away.
Across the private and public sector, in schools and in our communities, we are hungry for authentic leadership – we want to show up, we want to learn, and we want to inspire and be inspired. We are hardwired for connection, curiosity, and engagement. When leaders choose self-protection over transparency, when money and metrics are more valued than relationships and values, and when our self-worth is attached to what we produce, learning and work becomes dehumanized. People disengage and turn away from the very things that the world needs: their talent, their ideas, and their passion.
The equation is simple: Invulnerability in leadership breeds disengagement in culture.
Re-humanizing work and education requires courageous leadership. It requires leaders who are willing to take risks, embrace vulnerabilities, and show up as imperfect, real people.
What are your own "baseline" or non-negotiable standards?
According to recent studies by Hewitt Associates and the Human Resources Institute, the need for effective leader development programs is consistently one of the top three issues facing human resources managers across the Fortune 500 list of the world’s largest companies. With the pending retirement of nearly 78 million Baby Boomers over the next several years, the potential for a huge gap in leadership is a signiﬁcant threat to this nation’s ability to remain the global leader in the world economy. Additionally, the new wave of talent entering the workforce, the Millennials, want—and will even demand—more and better forms of effective education, training, and development in their preparation to be the leaders of our future enterprises.
Leader to Leader Institute 2015
- Who will step up to fill the "gap"? You?
Consider this oath of fidelity to one’s office and responsibilities as penned by a long-ago monarch. Would that today’s directors, CEOs, government leaders or heads of state might pledge themselves similarly! Our world would be a better place!
I will sing about your love and fairness. Lord, I will sing praise to you. (At the outset this is a clear reference of respect for the One whom the monarch recognizes to be greater than himself and to whom he owes reverence.)
I will be careful to lead a life that is without blame. When will you come and help me? (What quagmire of politics or social unrest may have prompted this spontaneous plea for the assistance of the One who is greater than he?)
In my own home I will lead a life that is without blame. I won’t look at anything that is evil and call it good. I hate the acts of people who aren’t faithful to you. I won’t have anything to do with those things. I will stay away from those whose hearts are twisted. I won’t have anything to do with what is evil. I will get rid of anyone who tells lies about their neighbor in secret. I won’t put up with anyone whose eyes and heart are proud. I will look with favor on the faithful people in the land. They will live with me. Those whose lives are without blame will serve me. No one who lies and cheats will live in my house. No one who tells lies will serve me. Every morning I will get rid of all the sinful people in the land. I will remove from the city of the Lord everyone who does what is evil.
Quoted from Psalm 101, the Hebrew Bible, a.k.a. Old Testament