Sunday, December 10, 2006

The Leader as Model

Philip. 3:17 Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us.

1 Thes. 1:6-7 And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit, so that you became an example to all the believers in Macedonia and in Achaia.

2 Thes. 3:9 It was not because we do not have that right, but to give you in ourselves an example to imitate.

1 Tim. 4:12 Let no one despise you for your youth, but set the believers an example in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, in purity.

One of the primary characteristics of a leader is that of setting an example; providing a model for others to follow. This seems to elude many leaders today. There seems to be a perception amoung many leaders that I have observed that they are somehow above the rest of the pack; that organizational policies and practices do not apply to them in the same way that they apply to, for example, an entry level employee. They give themselves far greater latitude in the implementation of regulatory procedures, occasionally treating them more like suggestions and guidelines than actually applicable to them at all times and in all situations. There is the perception that rules can be bent or even ignored if they prove to be too inconvenient.

This, of course, has led to the fall of many top executives in recent years as financial irregularities, misleading reporting or abuse of privilege and position are revealed, resulting in not only the leader being discredited but the entire organization.

I believe that the problems start, however, when leaders forget that their role is to consistently model the policies and values of an organization. They should not have to be reminded of what they are.

No comments: