Effective leadership only comes about when a properly trained and qualified individual also possesses both personal integrity and self confidence. While both integrity and self confidence are essential, the mere possession of one of these characteristics without the other, minimizes the effectiveness of the impact, and thus the results.
1. William James wrote, "There is but one cause of human failure. And that is a man's lack of faith in his true self." Individuals who fail to possess this faith can never be really effective leaders. They will never be able to trust their decisions fully, and thus, regardless of how well trained and otherwise qualified they may be, they will fear taking decisive stands, and leading others. Without self- confidence, individuals offer defer to others, and thus do not lead. True leadership is about leading others to follow one's vision, and this vision can only be viable when a leader has an underlying driving force that propels him to do everything in his power, and to use everything he can, to motivate others to understand the vision, and why it is so essential and vital. How can one truly lead others if he is uncertain himself? Please understand that self- confidence is far different from conceit. It is rather a feeling that a leader has examined everything thoroughly, gathers the necessary information, effectively listens and communicates, gains knowledge and true expertise, and then has the confidence to be brave enough to dare to express an opinion or stand up for something, even if it might be unpopular.
2. H. L. Mencken wrote, "Conscience is the inner voice that warns us somebody may be looking." A leader needs to possess absolute integrity, rather than convenient integrity. One only possesses true integrity when he consistently does what his conscience tells him is the right thing, and he must follow that direction at all times. In my over three decades of intimate involvement with over a thousand leaders, I have come to the conclusion that there are some telling signs of whether someone has integrity. The first "tell" is to observe what the individual does when he doesn't realize others that others are observing. Next, listen for a consistent message, regardless of the audience being addressed. Next, be certain that the individual always assumes final responsibility, and doesn't play the blame game. However, perhaps the most telling sign is to correlate one's words or rhetoric with his actions, to assure that they are consistent. There are far too many in leadership positions who merely do what's convenient and easiest, seeking credit without potential blame, and responsibility only when there are positive results.
Beware of anyone in leadership who uses revisionist history when describing his previous positions, actions, or thought processes. Beware of a leader who refers to everyone as his friend!
Richard Brody,with over 30 years consultative sales,marketing,training,managerial, and operations experience,has trained sales and marketing people in numerous industries, given hundreds of seminars, appeared as a company spokesperson on over 200 radio and television programs, and regularly blogs on real estate, politics, economics, management, leadership, negotiations, conferences and conventions, etc. He has negotiated, arranged and/ or organized hundreds of conferences and conventions. He's a Senior Consultant with RGB Consultation Services, an Ecobroker, a Licensed Buyers Agent (LBA) and Licensed Salesperson in NYS, in real estate.
Richard has owned businesses, been a Chief Operating Officer, a Chief Executive Officer, and a Director of Development, as well as a consultant. He has a Consulting Website ( http://tinyurl.com/rgbcons ), and his company PLAN2LEAD, LLC's site ( http://www.plan2lead.net/ ), and can be followed on Twitter